The Conference Board Employment Trends Index (ETI) declined slightly in September, following an increase in August. At 110.77, the index is up 6.7 percent compared to a year ago.
The Conference Board’s Chief Economist Gad Levanon said the ETI remains on a solid upward trend despite the monthly decline.
“The US economy is very strong now. Demand for workers is likely to continue growing rapidly in the coming quarters, but with the unemployment rate now at 3.7 percent, recruiters have their work cut out for them,” Levanon said in a statement announcing the September results. “They will have to bring more people off the sidelines faster. In the meantime, businesses will have to squeeze more out of their current workers, either by increasing working hours or raising labor productivity. Labor market tightness varies across occupations and geographies. However, for the nation we expect the unemployment rate to go down to 3.5 percent or even lower in 2019. We also expect labor force participation and productivity to gradually increase, and wages to further accelerate.”