A record number of workers are quitting their jobs, empowered by new leverage

The number of people quitting their jobs has surged to record highs, according to new data from the Department of Labor released Tuesday.

Some 4.3 million people quit jobs in August, according to the monthly survey — about 2.9 percent of the workforce. The phenomenon is being driven in part by workers who are less willing to endure inconvenient hours, compensation, or conditions because they know there are ample opportunities elsewhere.

Those numbers include about 892,000 workers in restaurants, bars and hotels, as well as 721,000 workers in retail. An additional 706,000 employees in professional business services and 534,000 workers in health care and social assistance also quit.

Warehouse jobs — recently thought of as jobs of the future — are suddenly jobs few workers want
Nick Bunker, economist at the jobs site Indeed, said the numbers were a reflection of the leverage workers have in the current economic market, with job openings outnumbering unemployed workers. The high level of people quitting their jobs was likely due in large part to people leaving jobs to take other positions, although the data doesn’t specify why people are quitting and where they are ending up.

“This really elevated rate of people quitting their job is a sign that workers have lots of confidence and they have relatively stronger bargaining positions then they’ve had in the past,” Bunker said. “There’s lots of demand, and people are seizing that opportunity and quitting their job.”

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Source: MSN