BLS: Job Openings Decrease to 10.4 Million in August

From the BLS: Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary



The number of job openings declined to 10.4 million on the last business day of August following a series high in July, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Hires decreased to 6.3 million while total separations were little changed at 6.0 million. Within separations, the quits rate increased to a series high of 2.9 percent while the layoffs and discharges rate was little changed at 0.9 percent.
emphasis added
The following graph shows job openings (yellow line), hires (dark blue), Layoff, Discharges and other (red column), and Quits (light blue column) from the JOLTS.

This series started in December 2000.

Note: The difference between JOLTS hires and separations is similar to the CES (payroll survey) net jobs headline numbers. This report is for August, the most recent employment report was for September.

Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey Click on graph for larger image.

Note that hires (dark blue) and total separations (red and light blue columns stacked) are usually pretty close each month. This is a measure of labor market turnover.  When the blue line is above the two stacked columns, the economy is adding net jobs - when it is below the columns, the economy is losing jobs.

The huge spike in layoffs and discharges in March  2020 are labeled, but off the chart to better show the usual data.

Jobs openings decreased in August to 10.439 million from 11.098 million in July.


The number of job openings (yellow) were up 62% year-over-year. 

Quits were up 43% year-over-year to a new record high. These are voluntary separations. (see light blue columns at bottom of graph for trend for "quits").

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