More jobs and a robust employment sector is bad news for the US Fed. The central bank wants to crush new job openings and give employees fewer chances to switch employers. However, the latest job opening data shows a different picture that may keep Fed to remain aggressive toward rate hikes.
The number of job openings increased to 10.7 million on the last business day of September, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The number of hires edged down to 6.1 million, while total separations decreased to 5.7 million. Within separations, quits (4.1 million) changed little and layoffs and discharges (1.3 million) edged down. This release includes estimates of the number and rate of job openings, hires, and separations for the total nonfarm sector, by industry, and by establishment size class.
On the last business day of September, the number of job openings increased to 10.7 million (+437,000), partially offsetting a sharp decline in August. The rate changed little at 6.5 percent in September but was 0.8 percentage point lower than its peak in March 2022. In September, the largest increases in job openings were in accommodation and food services (+215,000); health care and social assistance (+115,000); and transportation, warehousing, and utilities (+111,000). The number of job openings decreased in wholesale trade (-104,000) and in finance and insurance (-83,000).
In September, the number of hires edged down to 6.1 million and the rate changed little at 4.0 percent. Hires decreased in durable goods manufacturing (-57,000) and in state and local government education (-40,000).
Total separations include quits, layoffs and discharges, and other separations. Quits are generally voluntary separations initiated by the employee. Therefore, the quits rate can serve as a measure of workers’ willingness or ability to leave their jobs. Layoffs and discharges are involuntary separations initiated by the employer. Other separations include separations due to retirement, death, disability, and transfers to other locations of the same firm.
In September, the number and rate of total separations decreased to 5.7 million (-370,000) and 3.7 percent, respectively. Total separations decreased in accommodation and food services (-103,000); transportation, warehousing, and utilities (-42,000); and durable goods manufacturing (-38,000).
In September, the number of quits changed little at 4.1 million, and the rate was 2.7 percent for the third month in a row. Quits decreased in construction (-56,000); transportation, warehousing, and utilities (-35,000); and durable goods manufacturing (-28,000). Quits increased in state and local government, excluding education (+15,000).
In September, the number of layoffs and discharges edged down to 1.3 million and the rate changed a little at 0.9 percent. Layoffs and discharges changed little in all industries.
The number of other separations decreased in September to 299,000 (-84,000). Other separations decreased in health care and social assistance (-31,000); professional and business services (-28,000); and finance and insurance (-20,000). Other separations increased in other services (+13,000) and the federal government (+3,000).
Establishment Size Class
In September, the job openings rate decreased in establishments with 5,000 or more employees. The quits rate decreased in establishments with 50 to 249 employees. The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey estimates for October 2022 are scheduled to be released on Wednesday, November 30, 2022, at 10:00 a.m. (ET).