About 3,927,500 online job postings appeared on leading Internet job boards in February, a 17% jump from January, the Conference Board said yesterday.

“The softening in advertised vacancies is widespread,” said board economist Gad Levanon. “For the past three months, 75% of states had an average annual growth rate slower than the previous year. These data, along with the drop in the consumer confidence index from 112 in July 2007 to 75 in February 2008, suggest the slow pace of labor demand observed during the last half of 2007 may even slow further in the upcoming months. If there is a bright spot, the monthly increase in February from the January level was in line with the seasonal correction expected after the holiday season.”

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