February 10, 2005
On the last business day of December 2004, there were 3.4 million job openings in the United States and the job openings rate was 2.5 percent. In November the job openings rate was 2.4 percent.
The job openings rate has generally trended upward since August 2003, when the rate was 2.0 percent.
In December 2004, the job openings rate increased for private industries overall, and for the professional and business services and leisure and hospitality industries. The job openings rate rose in the South region, but showed little or no change in the other regions of the country.
The job openings rate is the number of openings divided by employment plus job openings. A job opening requires that a specific position exists and there is work available for that position, work could start within 30 days regardless of whether a suitable candidate is found, and the employer is actively recruiting from outside the establishment to fill the position.
These data come from the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey. The above data are seasonally adjusted. Data for December 2004 are preliminary and subject to revision. Find additional information in "Job Openings and Labor Turnover: December 2004" (PDF) (TXT), USDL 05-206.