More Job Openings And Less Resignations

According to Labor Department figures released Tuesday, job postings totaled roughly 11 million in December all while the Great Resignation slowed. Vacancies jumped to 10.9 million, considerably above the FactSet estimate of 10.3 million and up 1.4% from November.

  • The number of resignations, which had risen to new highs in recent months, fell to 4.3 million, down 3.6%
  • Layoffs and discharges fell to 1.2 million, down 10.7% from the previous month

Manufacturing Market Improves

In January, a measure of US manufacturing activity plummeted to a 14-month low amid a new COVID outbreak, bolstering the argument that economic growth slowed at the start of the year. However, the Institute for Supply Management report released on Tuesday showed hints of improvement in labor and supplier delivery performance for the third month in a row as factories all around the United States are humming due to high demand for goods.

But a surge in COVID infections caused by the Omicron variant could continue to exacerbate supply chain pressures and put a strain on employment as worker absenteeism rises as Timothy Fiore, chair of the ISM manufacturing business survey committee, noted:

"Limited expansion strength in production in January, primarily due to absenteeism rates as a result of Omicron, was the biggest reason to explain why growth was held back" reported by Xavier Fontdegloria

Last month, the ISM's national factory activity index fell to 57.6 from 58.8 in December, the lowest level since November 2020. Any reading above 50 signals expansion.


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