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Private Sector Job Openings Expand

small biz owner flower shopThis morning provided more evidence that the economic expansion is still on track, and remains on a trend of slow improvement, rather than some of the outsized expectations that came with Friday’s blockbuster jobs numbers.

This morning the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its monthly report on job openings and labor turnover. Job openings in September increased to 5.5 million, and in the private sector, openings were 5.02 million, the second highest for the history of this data series, which goes back to 2000.

“That’s definitely a good sign that businesses are still looking to expand hiring,” said Bob Hughes, senior research fellow at the American Institute for Economic Research.

Nevertheless, Americans who quit their jobs – a good barometer of their confidence in the labor market – remained essentially unchanged from the prior month.

Meanwhile, initial claims for unemployment this past week, while up slightly, remain well below the 300,000 threshold, and have been below that point since March, Hughes pointed out.

“It’s getting better, little by little,” Hughes said.

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