The Bureau also revised its estimates for job growth in September and October.
Photograph by Spencer Platt—Getty Images

New data could mean better days are ahead for the economy.

By Ben Geier
July 8, 2014

Job openings hit their highest level in almost seven years in May, according to the latest Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey data.

The 4.6 million job openings is the highest number of available positions since June 2007, before the height of the financial crisis. This, combined with last week’s report of an unemployment rate of just 6.1% — the lowest since September 2008 — could mean better days are ahead for the economy.

USA Today noted that the increase in openings, coupled with the slight slowdown in hiring — from 4.77 million hirings to 4.72 — could be a sign that companies aren’t finding good matches for the new jobs available in the American economy.

Around 4.6 million jobs were available on the last day of May, up from 4.5 million on the last day of April. The hiring rate of 3.4% and separation rate of 3.2% were also virtually unchanged from the prior month.

There was a substantial year-over-year change. In May 2013 there were only 3.9 million jobs available.

A total of 4.7 million people were hired in May, while 4.5 million people left jobs either through quitting or being let go.

Some of the industries where the number of jobs available is significantly higher than it was a year ago include professional and business services, accommodation and food services and education and health services.

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