Variation in Economic Data - 4/22/15
After an employment report earlier this month indicated that the U.S. added just one hundred and twenty six thousand jobs in March, the fewest since December of twenty thirteen, some economic observers became concerned that the economic expansion was running out of steam. But an even more recent Labor Department report indicates that the number of job openings in the U.S. rose three point four percent in the latest month for which data are available to five point one million – that’s a fourteen year high.
Growth in job openings was particularly evident among retailers, restaurants and hotels. Together, these segments were associated with sixty seven thousand more job openings in February compared to the previous month. The rise in job openings strongly suggests that hiring will rebound in coming months, which means that March’s disappointing employment report will quite likely come to represent a statistical aberration.
Recent data also indicate that the number of layoffs has been declining, suggesting that the recent weakness in the U.S. economy hasn’t compelled employers to begin slashing positions. Some high profile companies like Walmart, Ikea and McDonald’s have also been announcing intentions to boost wages.