WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. job openings increased moderately in September and layoffs appeared to abate, pointing to a gradual labor market recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
Job openings, a measure of labor demand, were up 84,000 to 6.4 million on the last day of September, the Labor Department said on Tuesday in its monthly Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, or JOLTS. Vacancies remained below their 7 million level in February.
The job openings rate was unchanged at 4.3% in September. Layoffs dropped 200,000 to 1.3 million. The layoffs rate fell to 0.9% from 1.1% in August.
The JOLTS report followed on the heels of news last Friday that the economy created 638,000 jobs in October, the smallest gain since the jobs recovery started in May. Employment remains 10.1 million jobs below its peak in February. Millions of people are experiencing long periods of unemployment.
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