Emphasizing that the numbers were "little changed" from November, this morning the Bureau of Labor Statistics released its report on job openings and labor turnover for the month of December.
There were 3.62 million job openings at the end of the month, according to the bureau. Just a month earlier there were 3.79 million openings, showing that there was a 4.5% month-to-month change.
The net change in employment can be found by taking the difference between hires and "separations" in a given period. The 3.1% hires rate combined with a 3% separations rate combined to increase the total employment in December. Over the entire year in 2012, there were 51.8 million hires and 50.0 million separations, making for a net employment gain of 1.8 million over those 12 months.
Areas that saw upticks in job openings included real estate, educational services, and health care, while mining and logging and professional and business services both saw fewer positions open up.
The next Job Openings and Labor Turnover report will be released Tuesday, March 12.