The number of job openings was 7.1 million on the last business day of October 2018.
The latest data showed that the job openings rate was 4.4 percent in November while the number of hires edged down to 5.7 million.
The hires rate was 3.8 percent with government hiring rates remaining virtually unchanged.
The number of total separations was little changed at 5.5 million. The total separations rate was 3.7 percent, with total private and government sections remaining little changed.
Large numbers of hires and separations occur every month throughout the business cycle. When the number of hires exceeds the number of separations, employment rises, even if the hiring level is steady or declining.
Conversely, when the number of hires is less than the number of separations, employment declines, even if the hiring level is steady or rising.
Over the 12 months ending in November 2018, hires totaled 68.0 million and separations totaled 65.6 million, yielding a net employment gain of 2.4 million.