A record 4.3m Americans quit their jobs in August. Here’s how Idaho fared

·2 min read

Idaho had the second-highest increase in the rate of workers who quit their jobs in August, according to a federal jobs report issued Friday.

The 4.1% change between July and August followed Kentucky, which saw the share of people who quit their jobs rise by 4.5%. Georgia was third at 4.2%, and the Peach State lost the largest number of jobs across the United States, 35,000.

The report said 32,000 Idahoans quit their jobs, up from 24,000 in July and 23,000 in June. In May it was 19,000 quit, the same as in August 2020.

A record 4.3 million Americans quit their jobs in August, representing 3% of the U.S. workforce. The losses, in what’s described as the “Great Resignation,” were felt particularly had in the retail, food services and hospitality industries.

It marked the fifth month in a row that broke a record with upwards of 4 million quits and was the highest number since the Bureau of Labor Statistics started collecting that data in 2001.

Nationally, the quits rate was 2.9% in August, up from 2.7% in July.

People walking away from their jobs has been felt more heavily in rural areas. Urban centers have fared much better.

“Service-sector jobs tend to be concentrated in more dense, urban parts of the country, so to see the quits rate pick up in other places was interesting,” Nick Bunker, an economist at the online jobs platform Indeed, told the Washington Post. That “may be a sign there’s more competition in those parts of the country than other parts.”

The resignations are being driven at least in part by workers upset with low salaries and inconvenient work hours. They’re quitting to find better jobs.

In August, there were 10.4 million job openings across the country, down from 11.1 million in July. Idaho’s job openings decreased from 67,000 to 59,000.

Idaho’s unemployment rate was 2.9% in September, unchanged from August, the Idaho Department of Labor announced Friday. The unemployment rate nationally dropped from 5.2% in August to 4.8% in September.

The state’s labor force grew by 1,270 people, 0.1%, to 906,191. That was the second-largest month-to-month increase this year.

Idaho industries showing job losses included private education services; state government; transportation, warehousing and utilities; local government; health care and social services; financial activities; other services; retail trade; and manufacturing.

Industries that experienced solid growth included information; arts, entertainment and recreation; and construction. Other industries showing growth were accommodation and food services and professional and business services.

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