The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturing job openings pulled back somewhat in June. The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) said that job postings in the sector declined from 333,000 in May to 308,000 in June. The May pace had been the highest since July 2007 (even as it was revised down from the original estimate of 347,000). Despite the easing, this continues an upward trend for openings for manufacturers, with an average of 326,000 through the first six months of 2015, up from an average of 290,000 for all of 2014. More importantly, the increased rate of job openings should bode well for stronger hiring activity moving forward. (continue reading…)
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturing job openings neared an 8-year high in May. The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) release noted that job posting in the sector rose from 335,000 in April to 347,000, the highest level since July 2007. This continues an upward trend for openings among manufacturers, with an average of 332,000 through the first five months of 2015, up from an average of 290,000 for all of 2014. More importantly, it could indicate stronger hiring activity moving forward, which has been quite weak so far this year, mirroring softer economic data in general. (continue reading…)
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that net hiring in the manufacturing sector was negative for the third consecutive month. The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) release continued to show softer-than-desired employment activity for the manufacturing sector in April, mirroring headwinds seen in other economic indicators. Manufacturers hired 256,000 workers in April, down slightly from 257,000 in March. At the same time, total separations – including layoffs, quits and retirements – were down from 264,000 to 259,000. As such, net hiring (or hires minus separations) was -3,000 in April, or somewhat better than the -7,000 observed in March. Hopefully, we will see a rebound in net employment growth in the coming months. (continue reading…)
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that net hiring in the manufacturing sector was negative in both February and March, according to the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) release. This was the first declines in net hiring for the sector in nearly two years, a reflection of the recent headwinds seen in the economy so far this year.
Manufacturers hired 254,000 workers in April, down from 259,000 in March. At the same time, total separations – including layoffs, quits and retirements – were unchanged at 264,000. Therefore, net hiring (or hires minus separations) declined from -5,000 to -10,000. This represents a deterioration from the more-robust pace of net hiring growth seen in the second half of 2014, which averaged nearly 25,000 per month. Hopefully, we will see a rebound in net employment growth in the coming months. (continue reading…)
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturing job openings rebounded in January after easing slightly in December. The number of job postings in the sector rose from 310,000 in December to 330,000 in January, which was just barely lower than the 332,000 seen in November. November’s pace had been the fastest since August 2007, and the number of openings have risen steadily on a year-over-year pace, up from 263,000 in January 2014. In this latest report, both durable (up from 195,000 to 202,000) and nondurable (up from 115,000 to 127,000) goods industries reported more openings for the month. (continue reading…)
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that the number of manufacturing job openings decreased slightly, down from 325,000 in November to 306,000 in December. While job postings pulled back a little, the longer-term trend remains positive. November’s pace had been the fastest since August 2007, and the number of openings have risen steadily on a year-over-year pace, up from 259,000 in January 2014. Still, the data were a bit softer in December, with both durable (down from 203,000 to 196,000) and nondurable (down from 122,000 to 110,000) goods industries reporting fewer openings for the month. (continue reading…)
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturing job openings increased sharply, up from 287,000 in October to 318,000 in November. This was the fastest pace observed since August 2007, four months before the start of the Great Recession. The number of postings in the sector has risen over the course of this year, increasing from its low point of 2014 in February, which had 258,000 manufacturing job openings. In November, job postings were higher for both durable (up from 182,000 to 191,000) and nondurable (up from 105,000 to 127,000) goods industries. (continue reading…)
The Bureau of Labor Statistics said that manufacturing job openings eased slightly, down from 293,000 in September to 290,000 in October. Nonetheless, the sector has seen improvements in the pace of job postings, with an average of 294,000 over the past six months (May through October). This represents progress since February’s rate of 258,000, the low point of 2014 so far. In October, job openings for durable good firms were up from 179,000 to 190,000; whereas, postings for nondurable goods businesses dropped from 115,000 to 100,000. (continue reading…)
Here is the summary for this week’s Monday Economic Report:
Manufacturers produced $2.085 trillion in value-added in the second quarter, according to new data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis. That figure is continued evidence that the manufacturing sector has a significant impact on economic activity, accounting for 12 percent of GDP. Moreover, the sector added 0.81 percentage points to second-quarter real GDP growth, which rebounded by 4.6 percent after weakness in the first quarter. This suggests that manufacturers had an outsized impact on economic growth in the second quarter, with only the professional and business services sector having a larger contribution to real GDP. (continue reading…)
Here is the summary for this week’s Monday Economic Report:
Financial markets have been rocked by worries about slowing economic growth, particularly in Europe. The Dow Jones Industrial Average has fallen 4.2 percent so far this month, declining to 16,321.07 yesterday on Columbus Day. The concern started after the Federal Open Market Committee (FOMC) released the minutes from its September 16–17 meeting last Wednesday. Indeed, the participants discussed how softer economic activity and geopolitical events could risk U.S. economic progress.
Then, on Thursday, the International Monetary Fund (IMF) slightly downgraded its global outlook, with Asia, Europe and South America growing slower than expected three months ago. The IMF now expects world output to expand 3.3 percent and 3.8 percent in 2014 and 2015, respectively, down from 3.4 percent and 4.0 percent as estimated in its July report.
Interestingly, the IMF raised its forecast for the United States, with the estimate of real GDP growth for 2014 up from 1.7 percent to 2.2 percent. This reflects recent strength in the U.S. economy, particularly when compared to other nations. To be fair, the IMF had more optimistic expectations for growth coming into this year, projecting 2.8 percent growth in 2014 in its January report. After disappointing growth in the first quarter, however, it lowered its outlook projections, much like everyone else.
Otherwise, last week was light on economic indicators. Of the ones that were released, the data were mostly mixed. California manufacturers reported a slight easing in the pace of new orders and output, particularly for durable and high-tech industries. Nonetheless, the data still reflect relatively health gains in activity, and hiring in California ticked higher.
In contrast, net hiring in the sector slowed in August nationally. On the positive side, manufacturing job openings have risen steadily this year after bottoming out in February, rising to 297,000 postings in August. These gains were part of a larger upward trend, with total nonfarm job openings increasing to their highest level since January 2001.
Beyond those measures, we learned that wholesale sales were somewhat soft in August—not unlike a number of other indicators. In addition, consumers were less willing to take on credit card debt. At the same time, wholesale spending has increased 5.9 percent over the past 12 months, indicating decent growth, with consumer indebtedness rising 6.8 percent. As such, it is clear that Americans have continued to spend, even if the pace lessened somewhat in August.
After some unexpectedly soft data in August, we will be looking for better housing starts and industrial production figures for September, both of which come toward the end of this week. Industrial production is expected to increase around 0.3 percent, and housing starts should once again exceed an annualized 1 million units. There will also be manufacturing surveys from MAPI and the New York and Philadelphia Federal Reserve banks. Beyond those indicators, other highlights include the latest data on consumer and producer prices, consumer sentiment, retail sales and small business optimism.
Chad Moutray is the chief economist, National Association of Manufacturers.