Open Jobs Down to 9.93 Million in February – NKBA


Open Jobs Down to 9.93 Million in February

By Manuel Gutierrez, Consulting Economist to NKBA

There was a sharp drop in the number of jobs open in the first two months of this year. In February, there were a total of 9.93 million open jobs, and in January, there were 10.56 million — while in December 2022, there were 11.23 million. Additionally, there were 2.1 million fewer open jobs available in February than the peak number of jobs available in March 2022.

  • The highest number of openings were in health fields, with 1.68 million jobs available. This number represented one in six of all open jobs, or 17 percent of the total. Even though employment in health has recovered all the jobs that were lost during the pandemic, this industry is still facing a large need for workers.
  • The hospitality sector saw the second-highest number of openings: 1.3 million available jobs. But unlike the health sector, employment in hospitality was still lagging behind pre-pandemic levels by 2.4 percent. There were 14.1 million jobs in the hospitality industry — and the vast majority of them (almost nine in 10) were in “food service” establishments, such as bars, cafeterias, etc., with the remainder being hotel jobs.
  • Among categories closer to some of our members’ businesses, there were 412 thousand openings in construction, accounting for 4.1 percent of all job openings in February. Compared to the previous month, job openings rose by 129 thousand. The construction sector saw 349 thousand job separations (156 thousand of which were persons quitting their job) and 369 thousand hirings. Compared to a year earlier — when the construction industry had 421 thousand openings — the number of open jobs in February was slightly lower.
  • Government, including all levels, had nearly one million available jobs, accounting for about 10 percent of job openings. The vast majority of these jobs were at the state and local levels, 86 percent of the total. Out of these, one-third were at state and local educational institutions.
  • Other areas with a large number of available jobs were retail businesses, with 829 thousand openings, and Manufacturing, which had 694 thousand open jobs.