According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS), in July 2015 there were 942,000 job openings in the Northeast region, which includes New York State. This was up 19.5% from June 2015’s level of 788,000. (Note: JOLTS data are available nationally and regionally, but not at the state level.) At the same time, the number of unemployed in the Northeast region decreased from 1.55 million in June 2015 to 1.51 million in July 2015.
The ratio of unemployed job seekers to job openings is a useful labor market indicator. It is calculated by dividing the number of unemployed workers by the number of job openings. In July 2015, there were 1.6 job seekers per job opening in the Northeast region, down from 2.0 in June 2015. The region’s ratio stood at 2.1 in July 2014.
Nationally, the number of job openings increased by 8.1% and the number of unemployed decreased by 0.4% in June-July 2015. As a result, the ratio of unemployed job seekers to job openings in the U.S. decreased from 1.6 to 1.4 over this period. In July 2014, the U.S. ratio was 2.0.
At the beginning of the last national recession in December 2007, the number of unemployed job seekers per job opening stood at 2.0 in the Northeast and 1.8 in the nation. By June 2009, which is the official end of the U.S. recession, the ratio was 4.4 in the Northeast region and 6.2 in the nation as a whole.
The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) program produces data on job openings, hires, and separations: http://www.bls.gov/jlt/
Unemployment data comes from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Local Area Unemployment Statistics (LAUS) program: http://www.bls.gov/bls/unemployment.htm
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