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Job openings little changed at 4.7 million in June

Hires and separations little changed

WASHINGTON (Aug. 12, 2014)  — There were 4.7 million job openings on the last business day of June, little changed from 4.6 million in May, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The hires rate (3.5 percent) was little changed and the separations rate (3.3 percent) was unchanged in June. Within separations, the quits rate (1.8 percent) and the layoffs and discharges rate (1.2 percent) were unchanged. This release includes estimates of the number and rate of job openings, hires, and separations for the nonfarm sector by industry and by four geographic regions.

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There were 4.7 million job openings in June, little changed from 4.6 million in May. In June, the number of job openings was little changed for total private and government. Over the month, the number of job openings was little changed for all industries and in all four regions.

The number of job openings (not seasonally adjusted) increased over the 12 months ending in June 2014 for total nonfarm, total private, and government. The job openings level increased for more than half of the industries but decreased for retail trade. The number of job openings increased in all four regions.

Over the past 12 months, the movement of job openings has varied. From June 2013 to January 2014, the number of job openings was little changed, decreasing by 97,000. However, from January 2014 through June 2014, the number of job openings trended upward by an average 159,000 job openings per month, for a total increase of 797,000 openings.

Hires

There were 4.8 million hires in June, little changed from 4.7 million in May. The number of hires was little changed for total private, government, and all industries and regions.

Over the 12 months ending in June, the number of hires (not seasonally adjusted) increased for total nonfarm and total private and was little changed for government. The hires level increased over the year for mining and logging, wholesale trade, retail trade, and educational services but decreased for construction. The number of hires increased in the South and West regions.

Separations

Total separations includes quits, layoffs and discharges, and other separations. Total separations is referred to as turnover. 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 jobs. Layoffs and discharges are involuntary separations initiated by the employer. Other separations include separations because of retirement, death, and disability, as well as transfers to other locations of the same firm.

There were 4.5 million total separations in June, little changed from May. The number of total separations was little changed for total private and government.

The quits rate remained unchanged at 1.8 percent in June. The quits rate was little changed for total private (2.1 percent) and remained unchanged for government (0.6 percent). Over the month, the quits rate was little changed for all industries. The quits rate increased in the South region in June.

The number of quits (not seasonally adjusted) increased over the 12 months ending in June for total nonfarm and total private. The number of quits was little changed for government. Over the year, the number of quits increased for retail trade, educational services, health care and social assistance, and accommodation and food services. The number of quits rose over the year in the South region.

The layoffs and discharges rate remained unchanged in June at 1.2 percent. The rate was little changed over the month for total private (1.3 percent) and unchanged for government (0.4 percent). Over the month, the layoffs and discharges rate was essentially unchanged in all four regions. Seasonally adjusted estimates of layoffs and discharges are not available for individual industries.

The layoffs and discharges level (not seasonally adjusted) was little changed over the 12 months ending in June for total nonfarm and total private and decreased for government. The number of layoffs and discharges increased over the year for wholesale trade but decreased for information and state and local government. The number of layoffs and discharges was little changed in all four regions over the year.

In June, there were 391,000 other separations for total nonfarm, little changed from May. Over the month, the number of other separations was little changed for total private at 327,000 and decreased to 63,000 for government. Seasonally adjusted estimates of other separations are not available for individual industries or regions. Over the 12 months ending in June, the number of other separations (not seasonally adjusted) was little changed for total nonfarm and total private and decreased for government.

Net change in employment

Large numbers of hires and separations occur every month throughout the business cycle. Net employment change results from the relationship between hires and separations. When the number of hires exceeds the number of separations, employment rises, even if the hires level is steady or declining. Conversely, when the number of hires is less than the number of separations, employment declines, even if the hires level is steady or rising. Over the 12 months ending in June 2014, hires totaled 55.7 million and separations totaled 53.3 million, yielding a net employment gain of 2.4 million. These figures include workers who may have been hired and separated more than once during the year.

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