Unemployment Numbers

U.S. Job Openings at 3.9 Million in October

There were 3.9 million job openings on the last business day of October, little changed from September. The hires rate (3.3 percent) and the separations rate (3.1 percent) were little changed in October.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

JOB OPENINGS AND LABOR TURNOVER – OCTOBER 2013

There were 3.9 million job openings on the last business day of October, little changed from September,
the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The hires rate (3.3 percent) and separations rate (3.1
percent) were also little changed in October. This release includes estimates of the number and rate of
job openings, hires, and separations for the nonfarm sector by industry and by geographic region.

Job Openings

There were 3.9 million job openings in October, little changed from September. The number of openings
was little changed for total private and government. The number of job openings increased in arts,
entertainment, and recreation and in the Midwest region and was little changed in the remaining
industries and regions. (See table 1.)

The number of job openings (not seasonally adjusted) increased over the year for total nonfarm and total
private and was little changed for government. Over the year, the number of job openings increased in
several industries but decreased in federal government. The Midwest and West regions experienced an
increase in job openings over the 12 months ending in October. (See table 7.)

Hires

There were 4.5 million hires in October, little changed from September. The number of hires was little
changed for total private and government. The number fell in professional and business services and was
little changed in the rest of the industries and in all four regions. (See table 2.)

Over the 12 months ending in October, the number of hires (not seasonally adjusted) changed little for
total nonfarm and total private but rose for government. The number of hires increased over the year in
state and local government and was essentially unchanged in the rest of the industries and in all four
regions. (See table 8.)

Separations

Total separations includes quits, layoffs and discharges, and other separations. Total separations is
referred to as turnover. Quits are generally voluntary separations initiated by the employee. Therefore,
the quits rate can serve as a measure of workers’ willingness or ability to leave jobs. Layoffs and
discharges are involuntary separations initiated by the employer. Other separations include separations
due to retirement, death, and disability, as well as transfers to other locations of the same firm.

There were 4.2 million total separations in October, little changed from September. The number of total
separations fell for total private but rose for government. (See table 3.)

In October, the quits rate was unchanged at 1.7 percent for total nonfarm. The rate was little changed for
total private (2.0 percent) and for government (0.6 percent). The quits rate was essentially unchanged
over the month for all industries and all four regions. (See table 4.)

The number of quits (not seasonally adjusted) increased over the 12 months ending in October for total
nonfarm and total private and was little changed for government. The number of quits rose over the year
in several industries but fell in mining and logging. The number rose in the Midwest and South regions.
(See table 10.)

The layoffs and discharges rate fell in October to 1.1 percent. The rate was little changed over the month
for total private (1.2 percent) and was unchanged for government (0.5 percent). The layoffs and
discharges rate fell in October in the South region. Seasonally adjusted estimates of layoffs and
discharges are not available for individual industries. (See table 5.)

The layoffs and discharges level (not seasonally adjusted) declined over the 12 months ending in
October for total nonfarm and total private and was little changed for government. The number of
layoffs and discharges increased over the year ending in October for mining and logging. The number
decreased in retail trade, accommodation and food services, and other services. The level also fell in the
West region. (See table 11.)

In October, there were 390,000 other separations for total nonfarm, little changed from September. The
number of other separations was little changed over the month for total private but rose for government.
Seasonally adjusted estimates of other separations are not available for individual industries or regions.
(See table 6.) Over the 12 months ending in October, the number of other separations rose for total
nonfarm and government and changed little for total private. (See table 12.)

Net Change in Employment

Large numbers of hires and separations occur every month throughout the business cycle. Net
employment change results from the relationship between hires and separations. When the number of
hires exceeds the number of separations, employment rises, even if the hires level is steady or declining.
Conversely, when the number of hires is less than the number of separations, employment declines, even
if the hires level is steady or rising. Over the 12 months ending in October 2013, hires totaled 53.0
million and separations totaled 51.0 million, yielding a net employment gain of 2.0 million. These figures
include workers who may have been hired and separated more than once during the year.
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The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey results for November 2013 are scheduled to be
released on Friday, January 17, 2014 at 10:00 a.m. (EST).



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