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JOLTs: Openings Jumped Again

October 16, 2018
Bottom Line: Job openings jumped again, accelerating at the end of summer to a new record high. Across all industries net hiring was still positive. The quit rate was unchanged at 2.4%, while the layoff & discharge rate rose slightly to 1.2%. The number of job openings as a % of short-term unemployed (less than 27 weeks) is now 143.2% vs. 134.1% vs last month.

Job Openings ROSE by 59k in August to 7.136 million, compared with market expectations for a decline to 6900.000 million.

Government job openings FELL by 20k. Consequently, private sector job openings ROSE by 80k. Over the past 12 months, there were 1,092k more job openings , 2,479k more than the March 2007 pre-recession peak level.

Job Hires ROSE by 71k in August to 5.784 million. Over the past 12 months, there were 277k more job hires , 315k above their November 2006 pre-recession peak level. Job Separations ROSE by 110k in August to 5.706 million. Over the past 12 months, there were 361k more job separations.

The Hires to Job openings ratio ROSE by 0.003 points from 0.807 to 0.811 and is modestly below its 12 month average of 0.867. The Number of Unemployed to Job openings ratio FELL by 0.01 points from 0.89 to 0.87 and is moderately below its 12 month average of 1.01. This ratio has been declining since its July 2009 peak of 6.7 amid some volatility.