Nearly two open jobs for every unemployed worker, data shows

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Published Wednesday, November 2, 2022
by Casey Harper

(The Center Square) -- There are nearly two open jobs for every unemployed worker in the U.S., the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics new employment data shows.

The federal data showed the number of job openings rose to 10.7 million in September, up about 437,000 from the previous month after a significant decrease in August.

"Based on today's release there are now 1.9 job openings for every unemployed worker," Jason Furman, an economics professor at Harvard, wrote on Twitter. "This is slightly less tight than the 2.0 ratio earlier this year but just barely. This level of labor market tightness is consistent with continued fast nominal wage growth and high inflation."

Hirings and layoffs decreased slightly.

"The number of hires edged down to 6.1 million, while total separations decreased to 5.7 million. Within separations, quits (4.1 million) changed little and layoffs and discharges (1.3 million) edged down," BLS said. "This release includes estimates of the number and rate of job openings, hires, and separations for the total nonfarm sector, by industry, and by establishment size class."

The job openings vary by industry.

"In September, the largest increases in job openings were in accommodation and food services (+215,000); health care and social assistance (+115,000); and transportation, warehousing, and utilities (+111,000)," BLS said. "The number of job openings decreased in wholesale trade (-104,000) and in finance and insurance (-83,000)."

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