Skip to Content Skip to Navigation

Unemployed Job Seekers per Opening (JOLTS data)

Northeast Region* and United States
February 2015 - February 2016

Image of a graph showing the Northeast region and united states unemployment job seekers per opening per month.
Data Highlights: February 2016 (seasonally adjusted)

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS), in February 2016 there were 845,000 job openings in the Northeast region, which includes New York State. This was down 6.1% from January’s level of 900,000. (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 1.34 million in January to 1.32 million in February 2016.

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 February 2016, there were 1.6 job seekers per job opening in the Northeast region, up from January’s level of 1.5. The region’s ratio stood at 1.9 in February 2015.

Nationally, the number of job openings decreased by 2.8% and the number of unemployed increased by 0.3% between January and February 2016. As a result, the ratio of unemployed job seekers to job openings in the U.S. remained unchanged at 1.4 over this period. In February 2015, the U.S. ratio was 1.7.

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 at 1.9 in the nation. By June 2009, the official end of the U.S. recession, the ratio was 4.3 in the Northeast region and 6.1 in the nation as a whole.

Historical Unemployed Job Seekers per Opening data, Northeast region and U.S.

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

Thanks for the feedback! It will help us improve your experience.