Attention all Business School students!!! There is good news out there on the jobs front. Despite all the hand-wringing about downsizing in the financial services sector, it has been one of the strongest areas of growth in the U.S. economy this year. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 153,000 jobs have been added to the Financial Activities sector in the past 12 months. The biggest gains have come in Real Estate and what the BLS calls "Insurance Carriers and Related Activities".  See the chart below.  Average wage growth in the sector has also been strong, topping $33.57 an hour, according to the Labor Dept.

While only 5,000 jobs were added in that sector in October according the latest Non-Farm Payrolls report, the steady gains across financial services show robust hiring in areas like credit intermediation, real estate and insurance. Professional and Business services has also been a strong area of job growth in the past year, but don't let the name fool you. Business and Professional services, according to the BLS, includes sectors like Waste Management, Travel services, and Employment services. While company management is included in that sector, it is mostly comprised of service related jobs as opposed to finance related jobs.