BLS Reports Lower Job Openings In September

December 2, 2002 ( - Job openings in September were down from a year earlier, according to the latest Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLTS) report.

September saw 3.374 million jobs available, down from 3.652 million a year earlier.  

Private sector openings stood at 2.895 million compared to last year’s 3.194 million.   Fewer jobs were available in most sectors, with retail recording particularly lower numbers – 658,000, compared to 790,000 a year earlier.  

However, more jobs were available in nondurable goods and wholesale trade.   Nondurable goods job openings were up to 126,000 from last year’s 119,000 and wholesale trade has seen an increase to 111,000 job openings from 107,000 last year.

Additionally, federal, state and local governments also saw increases.   Federal government job openings are up to 52,000 from 42,000 last year, while state and local governments saw 444,000 in September 2002, up from 416,000 the previous year.    

Regionally, the Northeast, South and Midwest, all reported decreases in the number of positions available.   Conversely, more jobs were open in the West, up to 796,000 from 760,000.  

Data from the JOLTS report are not seasonally adjusted and therefore comparisons of JOLTS estimates should be based on the same month in different years.  The BLS complies the monthly data from approximately 16,000 US business establishments.   A full copy of the report can be found at .