Number of Workers Quitting Reaches Record 4.5 Million in November

The number of US workers quitting their jobs rose to 4.5 million in November, reaching a record high, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Meanwhile, the quits rate rose to 3.0%, matching a high set in September.

Industries seeing the largest increases in quits were “accommodation and food services,” which rose by 159,000, and “healthcare and social assistance,” where quits rose by 52,000.

“Lots of quits means stronger worker bargaining power which will likely feed into strong wage gains,” wrote Nick Bunker, economic research director for North America at Indeed Hiring Lab. “Wage growth was very strong in 2021, and if we keep seeing the quits rate near 3%, we might see more of the same in 2022.”

Separately, the number of layoffs and discharges — involuntary separations from employment — was little changed at 1.4 million.

Total separations — quits, layoffs and discharges — rose by 382,000 in November.

The BLS also reported the number of job openings fell by 529,000 in November from October to 10.6 million. However, they were up by nearly 3.8 million on a year-over-year basis.

The number of hires was 6.7 million.


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