Job openings up slightly in January

A worker removes bolts from a concrete form at Doty & Sons Concrete Products in Sycamore, Illinois.
Daniel Acker | Bloomberg | Getty Images
A worker removes bolts from a concrete form at Doty & Sons Concrete Products in Sycamore, Illinois.

There were 5 million job openings in January, the highest level of open positions since January 2001, according to data released Tuesday by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

That was up slightly from 4.9 million openings reported in December.

Job openings have increased over the past year, with most showing up in professional and business services, health care, and food services industries. There was a decline in openings in the mining and logging industries.

The number of actual hires was 5 million, down from the previous month. Most of the hiring decrease was seen in construction and in the Northeast region, pointing at weather as a possible culprit.

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