Magazine article Economic Trends

Job Openings and Labor Turnover

Magazine article Economic Trends

Job Openings and Labor Turnover

Article excerpt

Since the beginning of 2004, employment growth has been solid: Average monthly payroll gains have reached 170,000 jobs, while the unemployment rate has gone down to 4.7%--the lowest level in nearly four years. The Labor Department's Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey supplements its monthly payroll data with indicators of the unmet demand for labor and the extent of labor shortages. The job openings rate, which considers the number of unfilled jobs and measures labor market tightness, rose to its highest level since the current economic expansion began. Today's relatively high rate could reflect difficulties in finding qualified workers or could simply indicate firms' willingness to add new jobs. However, hiring rates have risen as well, suggesting that the higher openings rate reflects firms' stronger demand for workers.

Separation rates, which include voluntary separations, layoffs and discharges, and other separations (including retirement), have inched down recently, after trending up since late 2003. However, the rate of voluntary separations, which can indicate workers' ability to change jobs or their readiness to retire, has risen steadily from about 50% of all separations in December 2003 to nearly 60% in recent months. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.