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Job Openings Remain High

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that job openings at the end of January were 11.3 million. Openings remain significantly higher than historical norms and makes clear we still have a severe worker shortage.

The 11.3 million openings in January were the second highest all time. The record was in December when we had 11.5 million openings. There are now more than 4.75 million more job openings than unemployed workers. Put another way, for every 100 job openings there are only 58 people who are unemployed and looking for work.

More than 4.25 million people quit their jobs in January – below the all-time high in November of 4.5 million. The quits rate was 2.8% in January. That is just under the all-time high of 3% which we hit in November and December. Job openings decreased in several industries, with the largest decreases in accommodation and food services (-288,000); transportation, warehousing, and utilities (-132,000); and federal government (-60,000). Job openings increased in other services (+136,000) and in durable goods manufacturing (+85,000).

The ongoing worker shortage is hindering the economy’s recovery by worsening supply chain issues and increasing inflationary pressure. That is why the U.S. Chamber of Commerce continues to work to solve this problem through our America Works Initiative