The number of vacancies fell for the first time in seven years. According to Statistics Netherlands there were 171 thousand unfilled vacancies on 30 September, down 13 thousand on a year ago. The number of vacancies per thousand jobs fell from 25 to 23, showing that the labor market is becoming less tense.
First dip since 1994
Since the third quarter of 1994 the number of vacancies increased on the previous year in every single quarter. When the economic growth fell sharply early in 2001 the number of vacancies stabilized. The record highs of 2000 were in place for another six months. Only in the third quarter of 2001 did the number of vacancies fall. The number of registered unemployed remained at the same low level during this period.
Vacancies diminishing fast in transport and communication
The largest drop in the number of vacancies took place in the manufacturing industry, trade, and the transport and communications sector. The number of vacancies was down 5 thousand on the
September 2000 level in each. A drop was observed as early as the first two quarters of 2001. Transport and communication had the greatest decrease, with the number of vacancies falling by 36%.
Vacancies up in care and small businesses
Institutions that saw their number of vacancies increase were mainly in non-commercial services. The number of vacancies in care increased by 4,000. The number of vacancies was also up in enterprises with less than 10 employees, with 6 thousand more vacancies than the year before.
Job market still tight
The number of vacancies per thousand jobs reflects the tightness of the job market. Despite a slight decrease in vacancies the job market is still tight. On 30 September 2001 there were 23 vacancies per one thousand jobs, down from 25. The construction industry was tightest with 33 vacancies per thousand jobs.
Job market less dynamic
The job market is becoming less dynamic. The number of new vacancies fell significantly in the third quarter of 2001. There were 21 thousand less than the year before, an almost 10% decrease. The number of vacancies filled fell by 9 thousand, which is just a little less substantial. The slight decrease in the number of vacancies filled is in line with the robust albeit slightly lower job increase.
(source: CBS ? Statistics Netherlands)