For release 10:00 a.m. (EDT) Wednesday, June 8, 2016 USDL-16-1149
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JOB OPENINGS AND LABOR TURNOVER – APRIL 2016
The number of job openings was little changed at 5.8 million on the last business day of April, the U.S.
Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. Hires edged down to 5.1 million while separations were little
changed at 5.0 million. Within separations, the quits rate was 2.0 percent, and the layoffs and discharges
rate was 1.1 percent. 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 were little changed at 5.8 million in April. The job openings rate was 3.9 percent. The
number of job openings was little changed in April for total private and for government. Job openings
increased in a number of industries, with the largest changes occurring in wholesale trade (+65,000),
transportation, warehousing, and utilities (+58,000), durable goods manufacturing (+46,000), and real
estate and rental and leasing (+41,000). Job openings decreased in professional and business services
(-274,000). The number of job openings was little changed in all four regions. (See table 1.)
The number of hires edged down to 5.1 million in April. The hires rate was 3.5 percent. The number of
hires was little changed in April for total private and edged down for government (-31,000). Hires were
little changed in all industries in April and decreased in the Midwest region. (See table 2.)
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 includes separations
due to retirement, death, and disability, as well as transfers to other locations of the same firm.
There were 5.0 million total separations in April, little changed from March. The total separations rate
in April was 3.5 percent. The number of total separations was little changed over the month for total
private and for government. All industries experienced little change in total separations over the month.
In the regions, the number of total separations declined in the Midwest. (See table 3.)
The number of quits was little changed in April at 2.9 million. The quits rate was 2.0 percent. Over the
month, the number of quits was little changed for total private and for government. Quits increased in
arts, entertainment, and recreation (+15,000) but decreased in construction (-45,000) and mining and
logging (-5,000). The number of quits decreased in the Northeast region. (See table 4.)
There were 1.6 million layoffs and discharges in April, little changed from March. The layoffs and
discharges rate was 1.1 percent. The number of layoffs and discharges was little changed over the month
for total private and for government. In April, layoffs and discharges declined in professional and
business services (-81,000). In the regions, layoffs and discharges decreased in the Midwest. (See table
In April, other separations edged up for total nonfarm and for total private, and was little changed for
government. The number of other separations rose in health care and social assistance (+20,000),
accommodation and food services (+13,000), and information (+7,000). The number of other
separations was little changed over the month in all four regions. (See table 6.)
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 April, hires totaled 62.4 million and
separations totaled 59.7 million, yielding a net employment gain of 2.7 million. These totals include
workers who may have been hired and separated more than once during the year.
The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey results for May 2016 are scheduled to be released
on Tuesday, July 12, 2016 at 10:00 a.m. (EDT).