Market Commentary

Job Market

private-sector jobs

Last month’s jobs report was weaker than expected though we still produced a significant number of new jobs. This week the number of Job openings for October rose from 10.6 million, which is a pretty large number historically speaking, to 11.0 million. If you couple that with the quit rate, which is the number of people quitting their job, which went from 4.4 million to 4.2 million, and the labor participation rate which is about 2% lower than normal you get a puzzling picture.

The interpretation is that people are not afraid to quit their jobs as there is plenty of them out there so they can get a new one and often at better pay and working conditions. Also, for some reason, millions of otherwise healthy available workers are choosing not to work. The thinking is maybe they are being incentivized to stay home rather than go to work. No one is really sure why but it is a good bet that too generous of unemployment benefits and fear of covid are the culprits.

The main conclusion has to be that we have a healthy jobs market for anyone looking for employment.