Online Job Demand Improves in February and Supply/Demand Ratio is Lowest Since Nov. 2008
"Online advertised vacancies rose 39,900 in February to 4,423,300, according to the Help Wanted OnLine Data Series. The February rise follows gains in December 2011 of 125,600 and 61,300 in January (see top chart). The Supply/Demand rate stands at 2.9 unemployed for every vacancy (see bottom chart); however, nationally there are still 8.4 million more unemployed than advertised vacancies.
“In a positive sign the Supply/Demand rate dipped below the 3.0 level for the first time since November 2008,” said Conference Board Vice-President June Shelp (see bottom chart). “This reflects both significant gains in labor demand as well as drops in unemployment levels since the end of the recession. Labor demand is up 227,000 over the past three months, continuing to narrow the gap between the unemployed and available jobs. With the monthly level of job demand around 4.4 million, labor demand is back in line with the pre-recession series high in 2007.”
MP: The levels for both total online job demand (4.4 million) and new ads (2.75 million) are above their pre-recession levels, and the Supply/Demand ratio dropped below 3.0 for the first time since November 2008, more than three years ago. Overall employment levels are still far below pre-recession levels, but this is another sign that the labor market is gradually recovering and healing from the devastating effects of the 2007-2009 recession.