In yet another testament that the US economy is indeed recovering a lot hotter than expected, the number of job openings in June skyrocketed past forecasts, as an increasing number of businesses struggle to fill vacant positions.
According to the Bureau of Labour Statistics’ Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS), there were a total of 10.073 million job openings in June, up from an upwardly revised 9.5 million in May, and significantly above even the most optimistic forecasts calling for an increase of 9.27 million openings. The latest figures were made possible after 3.3 million jobs were added to the labour market in the last six months, marking the longest stretch of gains on record.
There were 3.4 million more vacancies than there were hires in June, while the number of workers that voluntarily left their positions rose to 3.9 million. Job openings were most prominent across the professional and business services, retail trade and accommodation and food services industries.
With the US economy quickly reopening amid a strong vaccine uptake, the demand for various consumer services, such as dining and travel, has been sent soaring. As a result, employers have been scrambling to fill previously furloughed positions, but the supply of labour has been running short as public health concerns, childcare obligations, and generous unemployment benefits keep Americans on the sidelines.
However, the labour supply is expected to recover over the next several months, as enhanced jobless benefits are slated to expire, and schools will reopen come September. Despite this, the surging delta variant continues to threaten further delays in the labour market recovery, particularly if health concerns among the public become heightened.
Information for this briefing was found via the BLS and Bloomberg. 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.