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U.S. Job Openings Increase to 11 Million in October

  • Job openings in the United States increase to 11 million in October
  • Hiring holds steady while separations decrease, including a drop in quits
  • The largest boost to hiring occurred in educational positions, while the largest drop in separations occurred in transportation, utilities, and warehousing

Summary by Dirk Langeveld

The number of job openings in the United States increased in October, according to the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The report also noted a decrease in quits after they reached a record high in September.

A total of 11 million positions were open on the last day in October, up 431,000 from September. The largest increases in job postings occurred in accommodation and food service (up 254,000), nondurable goods manufacturing (up 45,000), and educational services (up 42,000), while postings were down by 115,000 in state and local government education.

Hires held steady at 6.5 million, while separations fell 255,000 to 5.9 million. Most separations were voluntary, with just 1.4 million occurring due to a discharge or layoff.

  • The quits rate fell to 2.8 percent, down from a record high of 3 percent in September, with the total number of workers quitting falling 205,000 to 4.2 million
  • Quits were down in several sectors, led by a 57,000 drop in resignations in the transportation, utilities, and warehousing sector; they were up in state and local government (excluding education) as well as logging and mining
  • There was an increase in hiring for educational positions, including 54,000 more hires in educational services and 37,000 more in state and local government education
  • The finance and insurance sector showed signs of contraction, with 96,000 fewer hires and 88,000 fewer separations but also 45,000 fewer quits
  • In the 12 months leading up to October, hires outnumbered separations for a net employment gain of 5.7 million
  • The job openings rate increased in firms with 10-49 employees as well as 1,000 to 4,999 employees
  • The quits rate was down in the smallest employers, with one to nine employees, but up at the largest employers with 5,000 or more employees

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