Connecticut Job Openings Up 5.5% to 96,000
Job openings jumped 5.5% to 96,000 in August as demand continued to outpace the availability of workers in Connecticut.
Connecticut has 29,000 (43%) more openings than before the COVID-19 pandemic according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ latest job openings and labor turnover report.
Over the same period, the state’s labor force—those working and those looking for work—declined by 41,400 people (-2%).
“Connecticut has 1.5 job openings for every unemployed person,” said CBIA president and CEO Chris DiPentima.
“The labor market is not meeting the demands of our economy and that shortage of workers is impacting our economic performance.”
Connecticut was one of 23 states where job openings increased, along with New England neighbors Rhode Island (6.9%) and Massachusetts (4.2%).
Job openings declined 14% in New Hampshire and 2.5% in Maine, with Vermont unchanged.
The BLS report also showed that Connecticut’s voluntary quits rate, now third lowest in the country, declined 36% over the last year.
The total separations rate fell 15% in the last 12 months and is now fourth lowest of all states, while the labor participation rate was 21st best.
However, Connecticut’s 3.7% hiring rate was 35th best, improving a modest 6% over the last year.
“Our workplaces remain very stable, with the average salary also growing 4.4% last year,” DiPentima said.
“We have the jobs—what’s needed are the people to fill those jobs, which means addressing key factors like the state’s high cost of living and the lack of workforce housing and childcare options.”
Connecticut’s 12-month job growth rate is 1.3%, 40th best of all states and eight-tenths of a point slower than the national rate.
Massachusetts leads the region at 2.5%, followed by New Hampshire (1.6%), Connecticut, Maine (1%), Vermont (0.9%), and Rhode Island (-0.7%).
Connecticut employers added 3,200 jobs in September—2,500 in the government sector—while the state Department of Labor revised down August’s initially reported 2,100 increase to a gain of just 100 jobs.
The state has now recovered 99% of all pandemic-related job losses. The U.S. recovery rate is 121%.
New Hampshire has the region’s best recovery rate at 110%, followed by Maine (108%), Massachusetts (106%), Connecticut, Vermont (89%), and Rhode Island (89%).
The state’s unemployment rate was unchanged at 3.5%, three-tenths of a point better than the national rate and 34th best in the country.
Vermont’s unemployment rate is 1.9%, the region’s lowest and second best in the U.S., followed by New Hampshire (2%), Massachusetts (2.6%), Rhode Island (2.6%), and Maine (2.7%).
Industry Sectors, Labor Markets
Six of Connecticut’s 10 major industry sectors added jobs in September, with government sector employment increasing by 2,500 (1.1%).
Other services gained 1,100 positions (1.8%), followed by manufacturing (900; 0.6%), educational and health services (700; 0.2%), leisure and hospitality (400; 0.3%), and information (100; 0.3%).
Trade, transportation, and utilities posted the biggest loss last month, shedding 1,200 jobs, a 0.4% decline.
Construction and mining employment fell by 900 jobs (-1.4%), followed by professional and business services (-300; -0.1%) and financial activities (-100; -0.1%).
Three of the state’s six major labor market areas saw employment gains last month, led by New Haven with 500 new jobs (0.2%).
Waterbury added 200 jobs (0.3%), as did Norwich-New London-Westerly (0.2%).
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