Last week we received a strong January Jobs Report
Tuesday We Received a Strong December JOLTS Report
This month we have received the first wave of the final economic reports for 2020. Last month we received the December ADP Private Sector Payroll Report, Weekly Unemployment Claims Data, and the December Employment Situation Report. The December ADP report surprised on the high side.
Remembering that the Jobs Report is created using two different databases, the Current Employment Situation (CES worker and wages data and the Current Population Survey (CPS) jobs and unemployment data, remembering that the Weekly Unemployment claims data has nothing to do with the monthly U-3 Unemployment Number, remembering that the ADP Private Sector Payroll data is totally different from the CES Non-Farm Payroll data, and remembering that the JOLTS data is comparable to, and different from, the Current Employment Statistics Data, what happened this month with the December JOLTS data?
We had a Record December for Hires, Quits, and Separations. The number that normally garners the majority of the JOLTS headlines is the Job Openings number. This year the non-seasonally adjusted Job Openings dropped month to month and December to December. The December 2018 level was 6.921M, the November 2019 Level was 6.468M, and the December 2019 level was just 5.892M. This is still the second most for the month of December. December 2017 we had 5.127M openings December 2017, 6.921 million December of 2018 and 5.892 million December 2019.
Record Quits mean than workers feel confident that they can find another job. Near record Job Openings mean that employers are still planning on growing this year. The other graphs can be found here.
The Sectors with the most Job Openings also had the most Quits, Separations and Hires. This month the top four are still the top four sectors. This month, as during prior months the positions flip from category to category. This month the interesting data was the fifth place sectors.
The real story here, this month, is that we are seeing substantial activity in Construction. This bodes well for New Home Construction and New Home Sales Data.
The December Job Openings data fell because it was December and Job Openings Fall during December. They also fell because hiring was at a record level. Five data sets, ADP, CES, CPS, JOLTS and the weekly unemployment claims data agreed that the economy was good, even though they speak different languages. Will the January JOLTS Report reflect the strength of the January Jobs Report? We will find out after the release of the February Jobs Report.
It's the Economy.
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