Job openings, overall hiring reach 5-year highs in September
WASHINGTON — Job openings and overall hiring reached five-year highs in September, signaling steady improvement in the job market.
Job postings rose 69,000 to a seasonally adjusted 3.9 million, the Labor Department said Friday. That's the most si nce March 2008, just a few months after the Great Recession began. It's also close to the roughly 4 million job openings each month that are consistent with healthier job markets.
Total hiring increased 26,000 to 4.6 million, the highest level since August 2008. The gain suggests employers are not only posting more jobs but are also taking greater steps to fill them.
September's total hiring is still below the roughly 5 million people who are typically hired in sturdier job markets.
The number of people who quit their jobs in September dipped from August but was still about 15 percent higher than a year earlier. People usually quit their jobs when they have another one lined up or are certain they can find one. More quits is a sign of confidence in the job market.
The growth in hiring, job openings and quits points to more movement in the job market, which can create opportunities for those out of work or who are looking for another job.
It also shows that competition for jobs is easing. There were 2.88 unemployed people, on average, for each available job in September. That's the lowest since August 2008 and down from 7 to 1 in July 2009, just after the recession ended. In a healthy economy, the ratio is usually about 2 to 1.
Unemployment is still high at 7.3 percent. But other reports suggest the job market is healing.
Earlier this month, the government's October employment report said the economy added an average of 202,000 jobs a month from August through October. That's up sharply from an average of 146,000 in May through July.
Those figures reflect net payroll gains, which are the total number of people hired minus those who were laid off, quit or retired. The net gain can increase just because fewer workers are laid off, even if hiring is flat.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- New J.C. Penney CEO comes from middle-income America
- Corporate America speaking out on social issues, getting results
- Truffle dogs sniff out pungent fungus prized by foodies
- How to land that 1st job after college
- After years of downsizing, big houses make comeback
- Importance stressed of securing your online banking
- Floating homes offer ‘affordable’ option in San Francisco area
- Aetna to buy rival Humana for $35B
- McDonald’s localizes menus to battle growing competition
- Airlines offer small conveniences to counter higher fees, less space
- Longer, roomier, ritzier Sedona upgrades minivan to 1st-class