The Augusta economy continues to improve: in September, the Hull College of Business Augusta Leading Economic Index (LEI) increased 0.3% from August. The index has increased 4.2% from September 2013. This represents seven consecutive months of growth. Employment has followed the lead with the area supporting over 5,000 more jobs in September than in March.
Another way to look at the robustness of the labor market is to examine hires and quits at firms. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the hire rate (new additions to payroll divided by employment) for the South U.S. was 3.8% and the quit rate was 2.2%. During the Great Recession the hire rate fell below 3% and the quit rate hit 1.4%. As the economy improves, not only are firms more confident and increasing hiring, but employees are more confident that if they quit their job they will find another.
Source: James M. Hull College of Business at Georgia Regents University
Author: Simon Medcalfe/ Associate Professor of Finance