Job openings have nearly doubled in the past year, an increase of an estimated 2 million job postings from December 1, 2009 to December 1, 2010.
Various sources including the Wall Street Journal are reporting a significant increase in job postings, numbers jumped from 2.7 million to 4.7 million jobs in just one year. Automatic Data Processing, ADP reported an unofficial count of companies adding almost 300,000 jobs in December alone. To keep up with job growth and to keep the unemployment rate low it will take about 125,000 new jobs each month.
With the release of the recent unemployment report, the unemployment rate stands at 9.4% for December 2010. Only 103,000 jobs were created, far less than what is required to keep the recession at bay.
The local real-estate markets received some upbeat economic reports as well, breaking the indicator’s holding pattern. Mortgage rates dipping back below 5 percent to 4.94 percent for 30 year-fixed rates with an average .42 discount on points. In 2008, the aver rate was 6.33 percent. On a $200,000 loan, that is a savings of about $175 per month. The indicator’s determinations are based on the in-depth analysis of news coverage across 15 daily national newspapers.
In December, the Dow Jones Sentiment Indicator (ESI) rose 2.2 points from 43.9 to 46.1, sparking hope that the economy will gain momentum during 2011. Alen Mattich, “Money Talks” columnist for the Dow Jones Newswires, said,” Improved sentiment about the U.S. economy is pointing to a solid, even if unspectacular, recovery in growth, including an upswing in job creation.”
Optimistic coverage of the shopping season, real estate and job creation all were contributors to the ESI. Specifically, real estate news of brisk mansion sales for over $3 million, as well as news of recovery in commercial real estate for the Bay Area, contributed greatly to the rise of the ESI.
In addition, positive news involving car dealerships across the United States and an increase of port throughput at the nation’s busiest port, Los Angeles/Long Beach, influenced the ESI. Even gasoline over $3 per gallon received positive media coverage, explaining the rise as a symbol of economic recovery.
In past years, the ESI has successfully highlighted economic risk in the United States. Prediction of economic turning points about seven months in advance have proven relatively correct in the past. The ESI has effectively helped prepare economists for turning points in the economy.