Happy business people closing deal and shaking hands after negotiation meeting in office

Continuing its upward trend, the Conference Board Employment Trends Index came in at 109.80 for July, up from 108.96 in June (revised). This suggests that the job market will maintain strong growth in the coming months.  

Seven of the eight labor market indicators spurred the index’s increase last month, ordered from the indicator that contributed the most to the one with the least impact:

  • Industrial production
  • Percentage of firms with positions not able to fill right now
  • Real manufacturing and trade sales
  • Ratio of involuntarily part-time to all part-time workers
  • Job openings
  • Number of temporary employees
  • Initial claims for unemployment insurance

There was no change for the remaining indicator — percentage of respondents who say they find “jobs hard to get” — in July.

“This high mark comes off the back of nearly 1 million new jobs added in both June and July and a steep decline in the unemployment rate,” said Gad Levanon, Head of The Conference Board Labor Markets Institute. He predicted struggles with recruiting and retention to continue through the summer and rapid wage growth to bring about higher inflation in the new year.

Those who are unemployed may still be reluctant to seek jobs due to factors like unemployment benefits, lack of childcare, and health concerns. “While this delta wave may produce slight slowdowns in hiring,” Levanon added, “we expect job growth to remain very strong overall.”