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The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, or JOLTS reported 10.7 million job openings  as of the last day of June, a decline from May’s 11.3M. This marks the third straight monthly decline and the largest since April 2020. Industries contributing to the decrease were retail trade (-343,000), wholesale trade (-82,000), and state and local government education (-62,000). Construction, which is sensitive to interest rates, saw job openings decrease (-71,000). There were also declines in manufacturing (26,000) and leisure and hospitality (91,000). Job openings were little changed in professional and business services, and ticked up in financial activities (+8,000). The number of people who quit their jobs for other opportunities remained steady at 4.2M and 2.8%. Quits decreased in construction (-51,000). Quits increased in state and local government education (+14,000). Layoffs were little changed at 1.3M and 0.9%. Layoffs remain low in industries such as Retail Trade and Transportation & Warehousing, while the information sector, which includes the tech industry saw an increase. The number of hires dropped slightly to 6.4M from 6.5M in May. The hires rate was unchanged at 4.2%.
The US Energy Information Administration reported that US commercial crude oil stockpiles increased by 4.5M barrels  to 426.6M barrels (7% below the five-year average) for the week ending July 29th. Crude oil refinery inputs averaged 15.9M barrels per day, a decrease of 174K barrels per day as compared to the previous week’s average. Gasoline inventories increased by 0.2M barrels (3% below the five-year average), and distillate inventories decreased by 2.4M barrels (25% below the five-year average). Refineries operated at 91.0% of their operable capacity processing 15.9 million barrels per day. Gasoline production decreased averaging 9.3M barrels per day. Crude oil imports came in at 7.3M barrels per day, an increase of 1.2M barrels per day as compared to the previous week. Crude oil imports averaged about 6.7M barrels per day over the last four weeks, 1.7% more than the same period last year. Total commercial petroleum inventories increased by 3.5M barrels last week.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported 528,000 jobs were added in July, as the unemployment rate declined slightly to 3.5% following four consecutive months at 3.5% – with 5.9M unemployed. The U.S. economy has now replaced all of the jobs that were lost in the early months of the pandemic. February 2020’s pre-pandemic reading was 3.5% with 5.7M unemployed. June’s payrolls were revised up to 398,000 over the previously reported 372,000 jobs. The July increase in payrolls was broad-based with gains in leisure and hospitality added (+96K), professional and business services (+89K), health care (+70K), government (+70K), construction (+32K), and manufacturing (+30K). Private sector jobs are up (+629K) over February 2020, while government employment is down (-597K). Average hourly earnings increased 0.5% in July. At $32.27 average hourly earnings are up 5.2% from a year ago. The labor force participation rate or the proportion of working-age Americans who have a job or are looking for one edged down to 62.1% from 62.2% in June.
Upcoming Economic Reports:
Wednesday August 10 – Consumer Price Index (MoM) (July)
Thursday August 11 – Initial Jobless Claims