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U.S. Job Openings Post Largest Increase in Two Years

The jump snapped three straight monthly declines in job openings

U.S. job openings unexpectedly increased in August amid a surge in demand for workers in the professional and business services sector, pointing to a still-tight labor market that could compel the Federal Reserve to raise interest rates next month.

The jump reported by the Department of Labor (DOL) in its Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey, or JOLTS report, on Tuesday snapped three straight monthly declines in job openings. Employers were also holding on to their workers in August.

Nevertheless, the labor market continues to steadily move toward an environment where demand is in balance with supply. There were 1.51 job openings for every unemployed person in August, marginally down from 1.53 in July.

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