The number of job openings increased to 5.6 million in December, the second highest number ever recorded, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Hires and separations were little changed at 5.4 million and 5.1 million, respectively. Within separations, the quits rate was 2.1%, and the layoffs and discharges rate was 1.1%. The job openings rate was 3.8%.
The number of job openings increased in December for total private but was little changed for government. Job openings increased in construction (+69,000), nondurable goods manufacturing (+60,000), and durable goods manufacturing (+26,000).