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Here's What Happened to U.S. Job Openings in May


There were roughly were 3.8 million job openings on the last business day in May, up from April’s 3.75 million, the Labor Department announced Tuesday.

The hires (3.3 percent) and separations (3.2 percent) rates were virtually unchanged.

Job openings rose in retail trade and fell in professional and business services, the report reads.

“The number of job openings rose in the Midwest but was essentially unchanged in the other three regions,” it adds.

The hiring rate in May remained steady at 3.3 percent, according to official figures. The hiring rate was about the same for all industries and regions.

There were roughly 4.4 million hires.

“Over the 12 months ending in May, the number of hires (not seasonally adjusted) was little changed for total nonfarm, total private, government,” the report notes.

Meanwhile, the total number of people voluntarily leaving their jobs (i.e. the “quits” rate) held steady at 1.6 percent for total nonfarm, down slightly from 1.7 percent, and 1.8 percent for total private.

“The number of quits (not seasonally adjusted) was little changed over the 12 months ending in May for total nonfarm, total private, government, and in all four regions,” the Labor Department reports. “Quits increased over the year for the educational services industry.”

The layoffs and discharges rate in May was 1.3 percent, pretty much the same as it was in April. The rate was unchanged for both the private (1.4 percent) and public (0.4) sectors.

“Over the year, the number of layoffs and discharges fell in professional and business services, educational services, and state and local government,” the report notes.

In May, there were 382,000 other separations for total nonfarm, essentially unchanged from the previous month,” the report notes. “The number of other separations also was essentially unchanged over the month for total private and government.”

During the 12-month period ending May 2013, hires totaled approximately 51.9 million and separations were roughly 50.1 million. That’s a net employment gain of 1.8 million.

“These figures include workers who may have been hired and separated more than once during the year,” the report concludes.



Follow Becket Adams (@BecketAdams) on Twitter

Featured image AP photos.

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