JOLTs: 3.9 Unemployed Americans Exist For Every Job Opening

As the US economy slowly attempts to get on a rocky course to recovery, some Americans are beginning to return to work following a period of record-breaking nation-wide unemployment rates. However, the number of unemployed people still continues to surpass the number of available job openings, despite the record surge in hiring.

According to the Job Openings and Labour Turnover Summary (JOLTs) released by the US Bureau of Labour Statistics, the month of May saw the number of job openings increase to 5.397 million, despite only an anticipated 4.996 million. The new job openings were primarily concentrated in the construction sector, retail trade, and accommodation and food services; conversely, job openings declined in educational services, federal government, as well as the information sector.

Up until the rapid economic collapse brought on by the coronavirus pandemic in March, the number of job openings consecutively surpassed the number of unemployed Americans. Come April, the sudden 18 million increase in unemployed workers astronomically exceeded available job openings; however, despite the month of May showing an optimistic rebound in the job market, there still continues to be 15.6 million more unemployed Americans than there are jobs. As such, the statistic translates to approximately 3.9 available workers for each job posting.

Also, according to the JOLTs data, the number of layoffs dropped to 1.8 million in May, with discharges falling to a rate of 1.4%. The rate reached a record-high in March with 7.6%; now however, the rate is relatively closer to pre-pandemic levels. Consequently, with a lesser number of people getting fired, the number of those quitting their positions has increased.

A total of 2 million Americans quit their job in May, mainly in positions across the accommodation and food services sector, durable goods manufacturing, as well as transportation, warehousing, and utilities sector. On the other hand, the number of quits declined for those working in local and state government and education services.

Information for this briefing was found via the US Bureau of Labour Statistics. The author has no securities or affiliations related to this organization. Not a recommendation to buy or sell. Always do additional research and consult a professional before purchasing a security. The author holds no licenses.

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