NEW YORK, Feb. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ — Online advertised vacancies rose 61,300 in January to 4,383,400, according to The Conference Board Help Wanted OnLine® (HWOL) Data Series released today. Nationally, there are 8.8 million more unemployed than advertised vacancies and the Supply/Demand rate stands at 3 unemployed for every vacancy.
“The monthly increase for the last 2 months (December and January) averaged 93,000/month, giving hope that labor demand will continue to improve,” said June Shelp, Vice President at The Conference Board. Overall labor demand has grown by over 1.6 million since the recession’s low point in April 2009. The current monthly level of labor demand of about 4.4 million is in line with the pre-recession high in 2007 and reflects a healthy level of turnover/churning in the U.S. labor market, which is good news for the unemployed and job changers. However, while the gap between the number of unemployed and advertised vacancies has also narrowed to three unemployed for every ad, down from a high of 5.02 (Supply/Demand rate) at the depth of the recession in April 2009, it still remains well above the November 2007 rate of 1.73, prior to the onset of the recession.
REGIONAL AND STATE HIGHLIGHTS
Among the 20 largest States, California and Illinois have largest gains
Recent trend in labor demand for three-fourths of the largest States is either flat or positive
The trend in labor demand for the U.S. as a whole is flat; however, the trends among the largest States differ significantly. In 5 of the 20 largest States the trend for labor demand is up (Georgia and Texas in the South, Illinois in the Midwest, and Arizona and Colorado in the West). In another 10 out of the 20 largest States, the trend in online labor demand is flat. On the other hand, the trend continues to be down in five other States (Massachusetts in the Northeast, Maryland and Virginia in the South, Missouri in the Midwest, and Washington in the West).
In January, the West rose 8,700, reflecting gains in all 4 of its largest States. California had the largest increase, 26,800. Over the past 2 months California gained 38,500. Washington was next with a gain of 2,400. Colorado rose 2,100. Arizona showed little change with a slight gain of 100. Over the past 5 months, Arizona has gained 5,200 and now stands at 79,600. Among the less populous States in the region, Utah lost 2,600, Nevada declined by 2,100, and Oregon fell by 1,000.
Labor demand in the Northeast dipped 14,300 in January. New Jersey experienced the largest decline, 5,900, and is now at 136,800. New York fell by 1,200 while Pennsylvania (+100) and Massachusetts (no change) remained steady in January. Among the smaller States in the Northeast, the number of advertised vacancies in Connecticut rose by 400. Over the past two months, Connecticut has added 5,900. Rhode Island lost 1,000 while Maine and New Hampshire fell by 600 each.
The South declined by 7,000 in January, reflecting losses in a number of its large States. Florida experienced the largest loss, down 13,100, while Maryland declined 5,200. States with gains included Texas, up a modest 4,800, bringing its gain over the last 5 months to 24,200. Virginia rose by 3,900 while North Carolina fell by 2,100. Georgia had a modest gain of 1,300. Among the less populous States in the South, Arkansas gained 2,300, Tennessee fell by 3,100, and Louisiana and South Carolina were down 1,800 and 600, respectively.
The Midwest remained basically flat, with a slight loss of 1,600. Illinois rose by 10,800. Over the past 4 months, Illinois has risen 17,900 to a total of 169,000. These increases were offset in part by weak labor demand in several of the other large states. Among the largest States, Michigan declined by 6,100. Missouri and Minnesota both fell by 2,600. Ohio and Wisconsin experienced smaller losses at 800 and 200, respectively. Among the less populous States in the Midwest, Indiana fell by 1,800 while Kansas rose by 1,700. North Dakota and South Dakota fell 1,500 and 400, respectively.
The Supply/Demand rate for the U.S. in December (the latest month for which unemployment numbers are available) stood at 3.03, indicating that there are 3 unemployed workers for every online advertised vacancy. Nationally, there are 8.8 million more unemployed workers than advertised vacancies.
The number of advertised vacancies exceeded the number of unemployed only in North Dakota, where the Supply/Demand rate was 0.74. States with the next lowest rates included South Dakota (1.20), Nebraska (1.36), Vermont (1.39), Minnesota (1.54), Alaska (1.59), and New Hampshire (1.63). The State with the highest Supply/Demand rate is Mississippi (6.44), where there are over 6 unemployed workers for every online advertised vacancy. Other States where there were more than 4 unemployed workers for every advertised vacancy included Kentucky (4.51), California (4.36), Nevada (4.11), and Illinois (4.09).
By Tim Spagnola
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