CHICAGO (CBS) — There may be fewer employees around to enjoy it, but more companies are holding holiday parties this year, according to a new survey.

Challenger, Gray and Christmas found that 83 percent of companies it polled (out of 100) are hosting parties, up 22 percent over last year.

That’s still below prerecession levels of 90 percent, but does include 10 percent of companies that are back in the party spirit after sitting out a year or two.

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The outplacement firm’s Executive Vice President Rick Cobb says in this jobless recovery, the holiday party is an inexpensive way to thank employees who are being asked to do more with less.

More survey results show 17 percent of companies have a bigger budget this year.

About half will be hosting in the office – which often means time off of work.

Half will be serving alcohol and a third are allowing guests.

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