The economic downturn that has left thousands of Americans out of work has allowed the Census Bureau to build the most highly skilled workforce in its history, officials say. The bureau has received many applications from retirees who hope to rebuild diminished retirement savings, and it has hired highly qualified younger workers who have lost their jobs. "The horrible recession has benefited us in an indirect way -- our applicant pool contains a set of people with experience and background and training that is unprecedentedly rich," Census Bureau Director Robert Groves said.

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