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The Conference Board Employment Trends Index (ETI) decreased slightly to 116.15 in May, down from 116.79 in April (upward revision). The ETI continues to inch down from its March 2022 peak, indicating that job growth is likely to continue at a decelerated pace. 

Negative contributions from five of the eight labor market indicators drove the index’s decrease in May: 

  • Percentage of Respondents Who Say They Find “Jobs Hard to Get” 
  • Real Manufacturing and Trade Sales
  • Percentage of Firms with Positions Not Able to Fill Right Now
  • Job Openings
  • Industrial Production

“Overall, we remain in a very tight labor market,” said Selcuk Eren, Senior Economist at The Conference Board, “especially compared to pre-pandemic conditions. Job growth continues economy-wide, with in-person service sectors leading the way.”

“For now, the labor market is cooling only in select industries,” Eren added, “most notably the information sector, which includes most tech companies. However, weakness is starting to become visible across other labor indicators, including a decline in voluntary quits and a surge in layoff announcements over the first five months of 2023.”