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BLS: Jobs Openings at 4.8 million in August, Up 23% Year-over-year

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From the BLS: Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary

There were 4.8 million job openings on the last business day of August, up from 4.6 million in July, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. …

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. … The number of quits was little changed in August at 2.5 million.

The following graph shows job openings (yellow line), hires (dark blue), Layoff, Discharges and other (red column), and Quits (light blue column) from the JOLTS.

This series started in December 2000.

Note: The difference between JOLTS hires and separations is similar to the CES (payroll survey) net jobs headline numbers. This report is for August, the most recent employment report was for September.

Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey Click on graph for larger image.

Note that hires (dark blue) and total separations (red and light blue columns stacked) are pretty close each month. This is a measure of labor market turnover.  When the blue line is above the two stacked columns, the economy is adding net jobs – when it is below the columns, the economy is losing jobs.

Jobs openings increased in August to 4.835 million from 4.605 million in July.

The number of job openings (yellow) are up 23% year-over-year compared to August 2013 and the highest since January 2001.

Quits are up 5% year-over-year. These are voluntary separations. (see light blue columns at bottom of graph for trend for “quits”).

It is a good sign that job openings are over 4 million for the seventh consecutive month – and the highest since January 2001 – and that quits are increasing year-over-year.
Calculated Risk

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