Job Openings across the US soared to a new record high in March, accentuating a sharp increase in labour demand as states reopen their economies and vaccinations accelerate.
According to the latest Department of Labour Job Openings and Labour Turnover Survey (JOLTS) published on Tuesday, the number of available positions jumped to 8.12 million in March, marking the highest increase on records dating back to 2000. The median consensus among economists surveyed by Bloomberg forecast 7.5 million openings.
The number of job vacancies surpassed hires by over 2 million, contributing to the biggest gap on record and further attesting to growing hiring challenges. Employers across the country are voicing concerns that they are finding it increasingly difficult to fill positions, amid ongoing fears of Covid-19 transmission, lack of adequate childcare, and the federal government’s generous unemployment benefits.
The number of available positions coincides with growing demand as the US economy reopens, with numerous businesses across the country attempting to fill positions that were previously furloughed as a result of the pandemic. The jump in vacancies was relatively broad across industries, particularly in the accommodation and food services sector, as well as manufacturing and construction. Job openings in accommodation and food services rose to nearly 1 million in March, marking the second highest jump in record.
Indeed, the Labour Department’s April employment print showed that there were a total of 266,000 jobs added to the US economy, which was significantly below consensus estimates that called for a 1 million gain. The worse-than expected payroll increase relative to the historically elevated job openings suggests that further labour market growth is being hindered by a shortage of labour supply, rather than demand for workers.
Information for this briefing was found via the Bureau of Labour Statistics 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.