Record Number of Americans Quit Their Jobs in November

Labor Department puts the figure at 4.5M
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jan 4, 2022 12:34 PM CST
Record Number of Americans Quit Their Jobs in November
A hiring sign is shown at a booth for Jameson's Irish Pub during a job fair on Sept. 22, 2021, in the West Hollywood section of Los Angeles.   (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

A record 4.5 million American workers quit their jobs in November, a sign of confidence and more evidence that the job market is bouncing back strongly from last year's coronavirus recession. Nick Bunker, research director at the Indeed Hiring Lab, noted that quits were high in the low-wage hotel and restaurant industries. “Lots of quits means stronger worker bargaining power which will likely feed into strong wage gains,'' he said, per the AP. “Wage growth was very strong in 2021, and ... we might see more of the same in 2022.'' One caveat: The Labor Department collected the numbers before COVID-19's omicron variant had spread widely in the United States.

The Labor Department also reported Tuesday that employers posted 10.6 million job openings in November, down from 11.1 million in October but still high by historical standards. Employers hired 6.7 million people in November, up from 6.5 million in October, the Labor Department said in its monthly Jobs Openings and Labor Turnover Survey. Employers have added 18.5 million jobs since April 2020, leaving the US 3.9 million jobs short of what it had before the pandemic. The December jobs report, out Friday, is expected to show that the economy generated almost 393,000 more jobs this month, according to a survey by the data firm FactSet.

(More employment stories.)

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