Associated Press (03/12/13)
The U.S. Department of Labor reported on March 12 that job openings edged up 2.2% in January to 3.69 million, following on the heels of a close to 5% drop in December. However, layoffs hit their lowest point since 2001 in January, and the number of Americans quitting their jobs reached a more than four-year high, indicating that the U.S. job market is gaining strength. The professional and business services sector, which includes temporary jobs, posted the biggest increase in job openings, followed by retail. Although job openings are up 55% since the recession ended in June 2009, total hiring has climbed just 17% over the same period as employers are slow to fill vacancies.