The Unshaken Market
After hopes the labor market was finally feeling the effects of 23-year high interest rates, new data for the month of August now shows otherwise. The job openings and labor turnover survey, coined the JOLTS, measures the number of open positions from American companies to track variance between months. Released on Tuesday, the JOLTS report signaled that for the month of August, job openings totaled 9.61 million, far higher than the Dow Jones estimate of 8.8 million. The figures come after July’s JOLTS report was far cooler-than-expected, falling roughly 340,000 from the month before. However, for August it seems the 700,000 increase in open positions signifies that companies still value employees large enough to where interest rates aren’t affecting them.
Alongside the rise in openings was also a modest increase in hires, rising by 35,000 to a total of 5.857 million for the month. Regardless, the increase in JOLTS came mostly from professional and business services, with over 70% of job openings coming from that sector alone. The news of the strong labor market data sent markets far lower, with investors placing larger bets on a Federal Reserve interest rate hike in November. Although the JOLTS is tracked closely by the Fed, investors should pay close attention to other employment metrics released this week like August’s Nonfarm Employment Change on Wednesday morning.
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I am not a financial advisor and my comments should never be taken as financial advice. Investments come with risk, so always do your research and analysis beforehand.