October Hiring Growth Bucks Election Cycle Trends

October Hiring Growth Bucks Election Cycle Trends



Nationwide improvement in hiring was not significant enough last month to put a sizable dent in unemployment, but it did buck historic trends of job market tumult in past presidential election cycles, according to the latest JobSerf/CareerCast Employment Index.

“The Index heads into election day at a respectably strong level, though high unemployment still persists in many cities,” says JobSerf CEO Jay Martin. The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 7.8%, the lowest figure in over four years but still above pre-recession levels. The JobSerf/CareerCast Employment Index reflects a similar outlook of tempered positivity.

"Election cycles provide uncertainty for the hiring market, but this level of hiring is still strong,” says Martin. "The positive change from September to October is atypical as compared to other years, but is welcome.”

The index gained 1.8 points last October, but fell in every other October from 2008 through 2010. The 14.3-point drop in hiring in October 2008 was the second largest decrease in the past four years, and reflected the outset of the recession from which the job market is still recovering.

How do we determine these numbers?

The CareerCast.com/JobSerf Employment Index calculates the number of available managerial job openings each month by surveying wide range of local and national job boards across the U.S, with all results hand-counted and checked for duplication by a team of researchers. What does an overall Index score of 108.4 for October 2012 mean? The Index measures employment activity against a base score of 100, which represents the volume of job openings during the same period in 2008. A score higher than 100 means that there are more available jobs than in 2008, while one below 100 means that job seekers now have fewer opportunities available. Over the past 55 months, the CareerCast.com/JobSerf Index is higher at 108.4 than in October 2008.