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Hire Economics: The Workforce is Restless, But Has Nowhere to Go


Last week, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) reported that 162 thousand new non-farm payroll jobs were created in July. To put this in perspective, the average since the beginning of the year was 192 thousand new jobs per month. This is a slight uptick from last year’s 182 thousand average of new jobs per month. As reported elsewhere, this is not enough job growth to reduce unemployment.

Another report, the DOL’s monthly JOLTs report of total open jobs in the U.S., provides a leading indicator of what to expect in the coming months. Unfortunately, it’s likely to be more of the same. As shown in the first graph, the total number of open jobs has been pretty flat for the past six months, with June coming in at 3.9 million, an increase of only 27 thousand from May.