A soaring rate of unfilled job positions at U.S. employers predicts more wage increases and competition to retain workers.
Americans have high hopes for raised pay-rates as private sector wages climbed 0.7 percent in the first quarter and up 2.8 percent annually through March. The growth rate is the largest it has been in six years. Employers are feeling the pressures of paying their workers more in order to maintain current employees.
Fast forward six years from the recession, the chance is that the halt in economic growth from last quarter is fading quickly, according to bloomberg.com. The number of claims for jobless benefits declined last week to the lowest level since 2000, another sign that leads to the wage increase outlook, reported by the Labor Department.
Michelle Meyer, deputy head of U.S. economics at Bank of America Corp. in New York said, ‘there’s still further ammunition for consumers to spend.’ Because of the wage increase and the lack of claims, this is a lucrative assumption for American workers. Bigger paychecks and new era of cushioned households are on the horizon.
The number of unfilled positions at U.S. employers climbed to 5.13 million in February, the most since January 2001, Labor Department data showed in early April . There are about 1.7 unemployed Americans per opening, matching the lowest rate since November 2007.
“It gives you confidence that employers aren’t looking at their workforce and saying, ‘Gee, I’m stuck with too many workers for the kind of demand I’m facing,’” said Guy Berger, an economist at RBS Securities Inc. at Stamford, Connecticut. “It’s a good sign, no doubt about it.”