WASHINGTON Aug 10 The number of available jobs
in the United States edged higher in June but remained well
short of the amount needed to give much boost to America's weak
economic recovery, government data showed on Wednesday.
There were about 3.1 million jobs open at the end of June,
a slight boost from May's upwardly revised 3.0 million,
according to the Labor Department's Job Openings and Labor
The job openings rate was steady at 2.3 percent.
The relatively low number of job openings -- unfilled,
posted vacancies that non-farm employers plan to fill within 30
days -- is helping keep the U.S. unemployment rate high.
That hurts consumer spending, as well as President Barack
Obama's prospects of getting reelected next year.
The number of openings remains well below pre-recession
levels. There were 4.4 million openings at the end of December
The rate of hires edged down slightly to 3.1 percent in
June, from 3.2 percent the prior month. The separations rate
also slipped to 3.1 percent from 3.2 percent in May. Hires and
separations are indicators of labor movement during the month.
The U.S. jobless rate was 9.2 percent in June. It edged
down to 9.1 percent in July, the latest data shows, largely
because people left the workforce.
Wednesday's report showed the rate at which people quit
their jobs, which can indicate workers' confidence in their
ability to find new jobs, was unchanged in June.
The rate of layoffs also held steady during the month at
The Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey encompasses
employment data from about 16,000 establishments across the
(Reporting by Jason Lange; Editing by Andrea Ricci)
(firstname.lastname@example.org; +1 202 310 5487; Reuters