Job Openings and Labor Turnover Summary


For release 10:00 a.m. (EST) Thursday, November 13, 2014	USDL-14-2064

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                    JOB OPENINGS AND LABOR TURNOVER – SEPTEMBER 2014

There were 4.7 million job openings on the last business day of September, little changed from 4.9 
million in August, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Hires (5.0 million) and separations 
(4.8 million) increased in September. Within separations, the quits rate (2.0 percent) increased and the 
layoffs and discharges rate (1.2 percent) was unchanged. This release includes estimates of the number 
and rate of job openings, hires, and separations for the nonfarm sector by industry and by four 
geographic regions.

Job Openings

There were 4.7 million job openings on the last business day of September. The job openings rate was 
3.3 percent. The number of job openings was little changed for total private and government in 
September. (See table 1.) The level of job openings decreased for arts, entertainment, and recreation. 
The job openings level was little changed in all four regions.

The number of job openings (not seasonally adjusted) increased over the 12 months ending in 
September for total nonfarm, total private, and government. The job openings level increased over the 
year for many industries, including both professional and business services and health care and social 
assistance. The number of openings also increased over the year in all four regions. (See table 7.)

Hires

The hires level increased to 5.0 million in September, up from 4.7 million in August. This was the 
highest level of hires since December 2007. The hires rate in September was 3.6 percent. The number of 
hires increased for total private and was little changed for government. Hires increased over the month 
in health care and social assistance as well as in the Midwest region. (See table 2.)

Over the 12 months ending in September, the number of hires (not seasonally adjusted) increased for 
total nonfarm, total private, and government. The hires level increased over the year in many industries, 
including both professional and business services and health care and social assistance. The level 
decreased for real estate and rental and leasing. The number of hires increased in the Midwest and West 
regions. (See table 8.)

Separations

Total separations includes quits, layoffs and discharges, and other separations. Total separations is 
referred to as turnover. Quits are generally voluntary separations initiated by the employee. Therefore, 
the quits rate can serve as a measure of workers’ willingness or ability to leave jobs. Layoffs and 
discharges are involuntary separations initiated by the employer. Other separations include separations 
due to retirement, death, and disability, as well as transfers to other locations of the same firm.

There were 4.8 million total separations in September, up from 4.5 million in August. The separations 
rate was 3.4 percent. The number of total separations increased for total private and was little changed 
for government. (See table 3.)

The number of quits increased from 2.5 million in August to 2.8 million in September. This was the 
highest level of quits since April 2008. The quits rate in September was 2.0 percent. The number of quits 
increased for total private and government. The quits level increased in professional and business 
services, health care and social assistance, and state and local government. Quits increased in the 
Midwest region. (See table 4.)

The quits level (not seasonally adjusted) increased over the 12 months ending in September for total 
nonfarm, total private, and government. Over the year, the number of quits increased for many 
industries, including health care and social assistance, and accommodation and food services. The 
number of quits also increased over the year in all four regions. (See table 10.)

The number of layoffs and discharges was little changed in September at 1.6 million and at the rate of 
1.2 percent. The number of layoffs and discharges was little changed over the month for total private, 
government, and in all four regions. (See table 5.) Seasonally adjusted estimates of layoffs and 
discharges are not available for individual industries.

The layoffs and discharges level (not seasonally adjusted) was little changed over the 12 months 
ending in September for total nonfarm and total private, and decreased for government. The number of 
layoffs and discharges decreased for several industries, including arts, entertainment, and recreation and 
in accommodation and food services. The number of layoffs and discharges was little changed over the 
year in all four regions. (See table 11.)

In September, there were 388,000 other separations for total nonfarm, little changed from August. 
Over the month, the number of other separations was little changed for total private at 324,000 and for 
government at 64,000. (See table 6.) Seasonally adjusted estimates of other separations are not available 
for individual industries or regions.

Over the 12 months ending in September, the number of other separations (not seasonally adjusted) 
was little changed for total nonfarm, total private, and government. (See table 12.)

Net Change in Employment

Large numbers of hires and separations occur every month throughout the business cycle. Net 
employment change results from the relationship between hires and separations. When the number of 
hires exceeds the number of separations, employment rises, even if the hires level is steady or declining. 
Conversely, when the number of hires is less than the number of separations, employment declines, even 
if the hires level is steady or rising. Over the 12 months ending in September 2014, hires totaled 56.6 
million and separations totaled 54.0 million, yielding a net employment gain of 2.6 million. These 
figures include workers who may have been hired and separated more than once during the year.
____________
The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey results for October 2014 are scheduled to be 
released on Tuesday, December 9, 2014 at 10:00 a.m. (EST).

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Last Modified Date: November 13, 2014