Friday, February 12, 2010

Job Competition and Hiring Rates

A article reports that getting a job is becoming a little easier. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Job Openings and Labor Turnover survey for December 2009 shows that 5.9 job seekers in the U.S. compete for every job opening, down from 6.4 job seekers per opening in November. December marks the first time the ratio of job seekers to jobs fell below six-to-one since June 2009.

While that's a step in the right direction, it's still a far cry from pre-recession levels. When the recession began in December 2007, there were only 1.7 workers per opening. Over the 12 months ending in December2009, hires totaled 49.4 million and separations totaled 53.6 million, a net employment loss of 4.2 million.

Overall, employers nationwide reported just over 4 million hires in December 2009, a slight decline from November. The CNN article reports strong hiring rates in construction (6.1 percent) and leisure and hospitality (5.2 percent), two industries hit hard during the recession.

Full details are available in the BLS press release

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