Gallup's U.S. Job Creation Index registered plus 32 in September, the fifth consecutive month it has been at this level and the highest in Gallup's seven-year trend. Net hiring in the private sector, where the large majority of U.S. employees work, was plus 33 for the month of September, the same it has been for five of the past six months. Government hiring netted plus 25 in September -- similar to scores recorded since April. The "hiring" and "letting people go" percentages have been steady for the last several months.
Regionally, net hiring was lowest in the East, at plus 29. The region generally has ranked lowest in workers' perceptions of hiring since 2013. Meanwhile, the Midwest had the highest net hiring score in September, at plus 34. This is down slightly from plus 36 in August, which matched the highest score any region has received since Gallup began tracking job creation. Net hiring in the South registered plus 32, while it was plus 33 in the West.
In September, 43 percent of workers said their employer was hiring workers and expanding the size of its workforce, and 11 percent said their employer was letting people go and reducing the size of its workforce, resulting in the index score of plus 32.
Gallup's Job Creation Index is based on a question that Gallup tracks daily, asking a nationally representative sample of 500 to 600 working adults, aged 18 and older, and reports monthly based on approximately 14,000 interviews. Gallup asks its sample of employed Americans each day whether their companies are hiring new people and expanding the size of their workforces, not changing the size of their workforces, or letting people go and reducing the size of their workforces. The resulting index -- computed on a daily and a weekly basis by subtracting the percentage of employers letting people go from the percentage hiring -- is a real-time indicator of the nation's employment picture across all industry and business sectors. The survey is conducted with respondents contacted on landlines and cellphones.
The hiring and firing trends that are the basis for Gallup's Job Creation Index provide key new insights into the potential future direction of job market conditions. Gallup's Job Creation Index provides information not available in some government indicators. For example, the government's weekly new jobless claims measure only reflects workers filing for benefits, yet not everyone who is laid off files for unemployment. The index may also detect hiring trends days or weeks before they are manifested in the official unemployment rate or other lagging indicators. Gallup has tracked its Job Creation Index daily since January 2008.
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