Job Openings Unexpectedly Decline By 123,000

Job openings unexpectedly declined for the third month but the number of openings is still historically elevated.

The BLS says Jobs Openings and Labor Turnover are little changed but a downtrend, albeit from elevated levels seems in play.

Job Openings

On the last business day of August, the job openings level was little changed at 7.1 million. The job openings rate was 4.4 percent. The number of job openings was little changed for total private and for the government. The job openings level decreased in nondurable goods manufacturing (-49,000) and in information (-47,000). The number of job openings decreased in the Midwest region.

Hires

The number of hires edged down to 5.8 million (-199,000) in August. The hires rate was 3.8 percent. The number of hires edged down for total private (-219,000) and was little changed for government. The hires level increased in federal government (+35,000). The number of hires decreased in the South region.

Separations

Total separations includes quits, layoffs and discharges, and other separations. Total separations is referred to as turnover. Quits are generally voluntary separations initiated by the employee. Therefore, the quits rate can serve as a measure of workers’ willingness or ability to leave jobs. Layoffs and discharges are involuntary separations initiated by the employer. Other separations includes separations due to retirement, death, disability, and transfers to other locations of the same firm.

The number of total separations was little changed at 5.6 million in August. The total separations rate was 3.7 percent. The number of total separations was little changed for total private and for the government. The total separations level was little changed in all industries. The number of total separations decreased in the Midwest region.

The number of quits decreased in August to 3.5 million (-142,000). The quits rate was 2.3 percent. The quits level decreased for total private (-144,000) and was little changed for government. Quits decreased in professional and business services (-76,000) and in other services (-67,000). The number of quits decreased in the Midwest region.

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