MetroIntelligence Economic Update by P. DUFFY
May job openings fall 3.9 percent, but still over two open positions per unemployed person
The number of job openings decreased 3.9 percent to 11.3 million on the last business day of May. Hires and total separations were little changed at 6.5 million and 6.0 million, respectively. Within separations, quits (4.3 million) and layoffs and discharges (1.4 million) were little changed. With 5.9 million officially unemployed persons, that leaves 2.12 open jobs per person, or an overhang of 5.3 million jobs.
Purchase loan applications fall 4 percent from previous week and 17 percent year-on-year
The Market Composite Index for mortgage applications decreased 5.4 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis from one week earlier, with purchase loans falling 4 percent (and down 17 percent year-on-year) and refinance activity falling 8 percent (and down 78 percent year-on-year). The adjustable-rate mortgage (ARM) share of activity decreased to 9.5 percent of total applications. The average contract interest rate for 30-year fixed-rate mortgages decreased to 5.74 percent.
June service sector economic index slips to 55.3 percent, but still in growth mode
In June, the Services PMI® registered 55.3 percent, 0.6 percentage point lower than May’s reading of 55.9 percent. This is the lowest reading since May 2020 (45.2 percent). Logistical challenges, a restricted labor pool, material shortages, inflation, the coronavirus pandemic and the war in Ukraine continue to negatively impact the services sector.