Employment Trends Index Climbs In August

Job creation in the U.S. continues to tick up, with The Conference Board’s Employment Trends Index increasing in August for the second consecutive month. The index now stands at 128.82, up from 127.64 in June, representing 4.5-percent gain compared to a year ago.

“The large increase in the Employment Trends Index in August suggests that a significant moderation in employment growth is unlikely to occur in the coming months,” says Gad Levanon, managing director of macroeconomic and labor market research at The Conference Board. “With solid job growth expected to continue, the unemployment rate is likely to go below five percent by year’s end.”

The Employment Trends Index aggregates eight labor-market indicators, each of which has proven accurate in its own area. Aggregating individual indicators into a composite index filters out “noise” to show underlying trends more clearly.

August’s increase was driven by positive contributions from four of the eight components. In order from the largest positive contributor to the smallest, these were: Percentage of Respondents Who Say They Find “Jobs Hard to Get;” Percentage of Firms with Positions Not Able to Fill Right Now; Number of Temporary Employees and Industrial Production. The other indicators are Initial Claims for Unemployment Insurance; Ratio of Involuntarily Part-time to All Part-time Workers; Job Openings and Real Manufacturing and Trade Sales.

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