The number of people quitting jobs in March hit a seven-year high in a sign that workers are becoming more confident in their employment prospects.
About 2.8 million Americans left their jobs, up from 2.7 million in February, the Labor Department said Tuesday. That’s the most since April 2008.
A large number of quits is a sign of a dynamic labor market in which workers feel confident to leave one job for another.
Hiring also ticked up despite a drop in job openings, reflecting employers’ need for workers despite a rise in layoffs. Employers hired 5.1 million workers in March, up from 5 million the previous month, according to the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey.
Hiring increased in retail, professional and business services, and leisure and hospitality. It declined in construction, manufacturing, and education and health services.
The number of job openings fell to 5 million from a 14-year high of 5.1 million in February.
Since last year, hiring has lagged behind a surge in openings, a trend that some economists attribute to a mismatch between the skills of workers and those demanded by employers.