Staffing Industry Analysts (02/01/2023)
The number of job openings in the US rose by approximately 572,000, or 5.5%, in December from November, reaching a five-month high of 11.0 million, according to seasonally adjusted numbers released by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
The increase was unexpected, Reuters reported, and exceeded forecast of 10.25 million job openings forecast in its poll of economist.
With vacancies concentrated in the leisure and hospitality industry as well as retail trade, some economists believed December’s surge was temporary, according to Reuters. Others speculated that job openings had been overstated because of difficulties adjusting the data for seasonal fluctuations.
“The leisure and hospitality sector accounted for three-quarters of the total increase, rising to its highest level since December of 2021 — a month which was followed by a sharp decline in January 2022 — a pattern we expect to emerge in next month’s report,” said Matthew Martin, a US economist at Oxford Economics in New York.
The number of hires also increased in December, up by 2.2% month over month.
The number and rate of quits, which are generally voluntary separations initiated by the employee, were little changed at 4.1 million, up 0.8% month over month. Quits decreased by 69,000 in transportation, warehousing and utilities, but increased by 65,000 in other services.
Layoffs and discharges changed little, increasing 3.5% in December to 1.5 million. Layoffs and discharges decreased by 43,000 in finance and insurance but increased by 4,000 in federal government.
This article originally appeared on staffingindustry.com. Use this link to see the full article: Don’t Blame Covid for the Worker Shortage