US Job Openings, Hirings Fall

Date: December 08, 2016

October Job Openings Down 1.8 Percent, Experts Expect Hiring To Remain Slow

According to the latest Labor Department data, in October the number of US job openings declined. The AP reports that October job openings “slipped 1.8 percent to 5.5 million,” but said that openings are “still at a mostly healthy level that points to steady hiring ahead.” The Labor Department reports also showed that hiring “fell to just under 5.1 million, while the number of people quitting declined to about 3 million.” The AP said that hiring “is unlikely to accelerate beyond its current moderate pace anytime soon.” Job openings fell the most in professional and business services, “which includes largely higher-paying jobs in areas such as engineering, accounting and information technology.” In addition, openings “dropped in construction, financial services, and in hotels and restaurants” but rose in retail and healthcare. Bloomberg News reports additional details of the Labor Department data, noting that “2.99 million Americans quit their jobs” during October, “little changed from 3.05 million in September,” and the quit “rate remained at 2.1 percent.” Layoffs in October were also relatively stable, at 1.52 million. This jobs data is likely to add to growing Fed data indicating a December interest rate hike is likely, Bloomberg reported, according to Barclays Chief US Economist Michael Gapen. Gapen said of the labor market, “We believe that labor markets have more than fulfilled the ‘further progress’ the committee was seeking for a December rate hike. Employment growth more than exceeds what most FOMC members find acceptable at this stage of the cycle.”

What This Means For Small Businesses

Small business owners know that hiring and job creation has been relatively flat as the US economy looks to continue its long, slow recovery from the recession. The latest job openings data seems to indicate what small business owners know – there are fewer people qualified for today’s open jobs, and market is relatively flat.

Additional Reading

MarketWatch also covers the latest job openings data.

Note: this article is intended to keep small business owners up on the latest news. It does not necessarily represent the policy stances of NFIB.

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