US Businesses Posted 11 Million Open Jobs in October—But Only 7.4 Million People Are Looking

U.S. employers had 11 million job openings in October. It was close to matching the record set in July. This shows companies are optimistic about the future of America’s economy.

Tuesday’s government report also revealed that there was a decrease in people leaving their jobs in October, to 4.2 Million, from 4.4 Million in September. But, it is still the third most resignations per month, according to data back to 2000.

The figures from the Labor Department’s Job Openings and Labor Turnover survey, or JOLTS, show that with so many companies chasing relatively few unemployed people, job-seekers have the most bargaining power they have had in at least two decades. While wages are increasing at an acceptable rate, especially for those employees who earn less, much of the increase in salary is being offset by rising inflation.
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In October, 7.4 million people were unemployed. This is less than two-thirds the number of jobs available. Before the pandemic there had been more workers than unemployed.

Employees who are offered higher wages tend to be more inclined to quit their job in search of new opportunities. High numbers of resignations are a sign that there is a strong labor force. It indicates people believe they will find new work. Majority of those who leave do so because they want to get new jobs.

According to separate data, the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta has shown that workers who switch jobs get higher salaries than those who are able to stay.

Job openings rose about 4% in October to 11 million, just below July’s peak of 11.1 million. This was followed by a nearly 20% jump in restaurant, bar, and hotel openings to close to 1.6million.

While manufacturing companies are looking for more staff, many face difficulties in obtaining supplies because of widespread supply chain bottlenecks. There were just over one million factory jobs in October. That’s more than twice as many pre-pandemic levels and is the most recent record.


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