Job openings reached record in April, as worker shortage concerns rose

Business concern: The new data, coupled with a mediocre job report for May, stir up business complaints about a labor shortage. The National Federation of Independent Business’ optimism fell slightly over the past month, as nearly half of business owners said they couldn’t find workers to fill vacancies.

Where are the jobs: Openings in accommodation and catering services – industries rocked by the coronavirus pandemic – saw the largest surge in new opportunities in April, followed by “other services” and manufacturing.

What it means: Economists say the tightness of the labor market gives workers more power in choosing a career, especially in the hospitality industry.

“High layoffs mean workers are comfortable leaving their jobs in search of better candidates,” wrote Elise Gould, senior economist at the left-wing Economic Policy Institute. “Low layoffs are an obvious commodity. The economic recovery is picking up speed. ”

“The sectors that are leading the way in quitting are those where job markets are already quite tight or where hiring rates are increasing: recreation and hospitality, transportation and warehousing, and retail,” added Nick Bunker, research director for Indeed, the recruiting website .

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