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Despite job openings, Americans are still not looking for work

Despite job openings, Americans are still not looking for work

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported on Wednesday that despite the fact that the number of job openings decreased dramatically in May, they still greatly outweighed the number of people actively seeking employment.

The number of job postings exceeded FactSet’s projection of 11.04 million despite the dip. There were 5.95 million people classified as jobless during the month, equating to 1.9 job vacancies for every available worker. This rate is still at historical highs.


During the COVID era, there has been an increase in the number of people who quit their jobs on their own. This is a sign that people are becoming more mobile during a time when there are serious labor shortages.

Federal Reserve officials constantly monitor the JOLTS report for indicators of labor market slack. In May, the unemployment rate in the United States was 3.6%, slightly higher than before the epidemic.

However, 440,000 fewer Americans are employed currently than in February 2020. According to data dating back to December 2000, layoffs increased to 1.39 million in May after reaching a series low in April.

A recent poll by the Pew Research Center shows that low pay, few opportunities for growth, and feeling disrespected at work are the top three reasons why Americans quit their jobs in the past year.

Despite job openings, Americans are still not looking for work

The majority of employees who abandoned their jobs in 2021 cited low pay (63%), lack of growth prospects (63%) and feeling disrespected at work (57%), according to a study conducted between February 7 and 13.

At least one-third believe that each of these was a major reason for their departure. Child care concerns are cited by roughly half of those leaving their jobs (48% among those with a child under the age of 18 in the household).

Similarly, a high percentage (45%) cited a lack of flexibility in scheduling their hours and the absence of adequate perks such as health insurance and paid time off (43%). Roughly one-fourth of respondents cite each as a key factor.

About four-in-ten individuals who leave a job in the past year report working too many hours as a cause, while three-in-ten claim working too few hours. About one-third (35%) say they want to move to a new place, but only 18% say their employer wants them to get a COVID-19 shot.


When asked separately if the coronavirus epidemic was a factor in their decision to leave a job, 31% of respondents believed it was. 34 percent of those without a four-year college degree cite the pandemic as a factor in their choice, compared to 21 percent of those with a bachelor’s degree or above. Men and women had comparable reasons for leaving their jobs over the preceding year.

However, job opportunities decreased significantly in the industrial, professional and business service sectors, while they increased in the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors. The number of new hires fell to 6.49 million, but the rate remained unchanged at 4.3 percent.

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Monthly nonfarm payrolls data

On Friday, the BLS will issue the monthly nonfarm payrolls data, which will provide a more current picture of the labor market. The economists surveyed by Dow Jones anticipate an increase of 250,000 jobs and the maintenance of the unemployment rate.

Also, the ISM services index for June posted a score of 54.6, indicating the proportion of businesses experiencing growth. This was better than the 54.5 Dow Jones prediction but below the 55.9 recorded in May.


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Mitch McConnell, Senate Minority Leader, stated on Tuesday that labor shortages would cease when employees deplete their stimulus funds, as it appears that Americans amassed a substantial amount of savings during the pandemic due to many federal rescue packages.

Between the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic and the end of 2021, households saved an additional $2.6 trillion, according to Moody’s Analytics.

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