Record Job Openings
Job openings nearly match the unemployment level. The JOLTS latest reading for job openings was a record 9.29 million people compared with the unemployment level at 9.32 million.
The YoY change in average hourly earnings (red line) highlights the spike early in the pandemic as lower wage employees were more likely to lose jobs. The recent drop reflects the "base" effect as we reached the anniversary of the lockdowns.
With fewer unemployed people and the high number of job openings, wage growth should continue. Note the stagnation of earnings growth at about 2% following the GFC. As the unemployment level and job openings converged, average hourly earnings growth increased to 3.5% by early 2019.