Jobs surpass 10 million for the first time, according to the Labor Department
A “We’re hiring!” The sign is displayed at a Starbucks on August 06, 2021 in Los Angeles, California.
Mario Tama | Getty Images
The number of job openings in the U.S. economy rose to over 10 million in June, the highest on record, as the U.S. labor market continues a choppy recovery after last year’s economic shutdowns, the Labor Department announced Monday.
There were 10.1 million jobs open on the last day of June, according to the report, up from 9.2 million in May. The economist polled by Dow Jones expected 9.1 million openings. The jump came as the quit rate rose while the rate of layoffs and layoffs remained unchanged, reflecting increased bargaining power and employment options for workers.
By industry, leisure and hospitality have one of the highest levels of job vacancies with more than 1.6 million. Health care and social assistance have 1.5 million openings.
“The demand for labor continues to strengthen. This is the third consecutive month of record job openings,” said Nick Bunker, head of research at Indeed Hiring Lab, in a note. “The quit rate is also close to its all-time high, which was set just two months ago in April. This wave of demand will eventually recede, but job seekers should benefit until then.”
Although the unemployment rate remains above 5% and the US economy has millions of jobs below pre-pandemic levels, many companies have reported difficulty finding workers. Nominal wage gains, especially among non-management employees, also indicate a tighter labor market.
The job vacancies survey came before the July jobs report released last week, which showed the economy had created 954,000 jobs. Hiring accelerated during the summer after disappointing results at the start of the year.
The Labor Department said in Friday’s jobs report that there were 8.7 million Americans looking for work, meaning there were more jobs open than there were. potential workers. Certainly, improving economies and tight labor markets can push workers off the sidelines and back into the workforce.
The high level of job vacancies comes even as some states have ended additional unemployment benefits that were created during the pandemic in an attempt to motivate Americans to return to work. The additional benefits are expected to expire for the rest of the country next month.
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