NEW YORK – The Conference Board’s Employment Trends Index (ETI) grew to 107.46 in February from an upwardly revised 105.99 in January, originally reported as 105.81, and is up 6.1% from a year ago, the group announced Monday.
"The acceleration in the ETI suggests that rapid job growth is likely to continue in the next several months, despite modest improvements in Demand and Production," said Gad Levanon, Associate Director, Macroeconomic Research at The Conference Board. "In the past year output per hour of work grew very slowly. If this trend continues, employment growth could remain robust even if GDP continues to grow at a modest 2 to 2.5 percent, as we expect."
The increase in the ETI, was driven by positive contributions from seven of the eight components. The improving indicators include: percentage of respondents who say they find “jobs hard to get”, number of employees hired by the temporary-help industry, initial claims for unemployment insurance, industrial production, real manufacturing and trade sale, part-time workers for economic reasons, and job openings. The only negative contributor this month was percentage of firms with positions not able to fill right now.
The ETI aggregates eight labor-market indicators, each of which has proven accurate in its own area. Aggregating individual indicators into a composite index filters out so-called "noise" to show underlying trends more clearly.
The eight labor-market indicators aggregated into the ETI include: Percentage of respondents who say they find “Jobs Hard to Get” (The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Survey); Initial Claims for Unemployment Insurance (U.S. Department of Labor); Percentage of Firms With Positions Not Able to Fill Right Now (National Federation of Independent Business Research Foundation); Number of Employees Hired by the Temporary-Help Industry (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics); Part-time Workers for Economic Reasons (BLS); Job Openings (BLS); Industrial Production (Federal Reserve Board); and Real Manufacturing and Trade Sales (U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis).