In December 2015 alone, 3.1 million Americans quit their jobs. Here are the 10 industries that saw the highest quitting rates.
Industries with the highest quit rates
In a report released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2016, data showed that 3.1 million Americans quit their jobs in December 2015, representing the highest quitting rate in a month since December 2007. The overall rate was 2.1 percent for the last month of 2015, and Wells Fargo economists believe the uptick in quits "reflects workers feeling additional job opportunities are more widely available."
With this in mind, data site CareerTrends found the industries with the highest quitting rates of the past year. Using data from the BLS, we ranked the 10 industries with the highest rates of quitting from January 2015 to December 2015. To find the overall 2015 quit rate, we took the reported monthly quit rates from the BLS and found the median quit rate for each industry. We also included the total quits for the year from each industry, as well as the industry description provided by the BLS.
Note: In the event of ties, the industry with the most total quits was ranked higher.
10. Real Estate and Rental and Leasing
Quit rate: 1.5 percent
Total quits: 391,000
Description: The Real Estate and Rental and Leasing sector comprises establishments primarily engaged in renting, leasing or otherwise allowing the use of tangible or intangible assets, and establishments providing related services. The major portion of this sector comprises establishments that rent, lease or otherwise allow the use of their own assets by others. The assets may be tangible, as is the case of real estate and equipment, or intangible, as is the case with patents and trademarks.
9. Transportation, Warehousing and Utilities
Total quits: 1.115 million
Description: The Transportation and Warehousing sector includes industries providing transportation of passengers and cargo, warehousing and storage for goods, scenic and sightseeing transportation, and support activities related to modes of transportation. Establishments in these industries use transportation equipment or transportation related facilities as a productive asset. The type of equipment depends on the mode of transportation. The modes of transportation are air, rail, water, road and pipeline.
The Utilities sector comprises establishments engaged in the provision of the following utility services: electric power, natural gas, steam supply, water supply and sewage removal. Within this sector, the specific activities associated with the utility services provided vary by utility: electric power includes generation, transmission and distribution; natural gas includes distribution; steam supply includes provision and/or distribution; water supply includes treatment and distribution; and sewage removal includes collection, treatment and disposal of waste through sewer systems and sewage treatment facilities.
8. Health Care and Social Assistance
Total quits: 3.897 million
Description: The Health Care and Social Assistance sector comprises establishments providing health care and social assistance for individuals. The sector includes both health care and social assistance because it is sometimes difficult to distinguish between the boundaries of these two activities.
The industries in this sector are arranged on a continuum starting with those establishments providing medical care exclusively, continuing with those providing health care and social assistance, and finally finishing with those providing only social assistance. The services provided by establishments in this sector are delivered by trained professionals. All industries in the sector share this commonality of process, namely, labor inputs of health practitioners or social workers with the requisite expertise. Many of the industries in the sector are defined based on the educational degree held by the practitioners included in the industry.
7. Mining and Logging
Quit rate: 1.8 percent
Total quits: 172,000
Description: This industry comprises establishments primarily engaged in one or more of the following: cutting timber; cutting and transporting timber; and producing wood chips in the field. Industries in the Mining (except Oil and Gas) subsector primarily engage in mining, mine site development and beneficiating (i.e., preparing) metallic minerals and nonmetallic minerals, including coal. The term "mining" is used in the broad sense to include ore extraction, quarrying and beneficiating (e.g., crushing, screening, washing, sizing, concentrating and flotation), customarily done at the mine site.
Quit rate: 1.8 percent
Total quits: 1.384 million
Description: The Construction sector comprises establishments primarily engaged in the construction of buildings or engineering projects (e.g., highways and utility systems). Establishments primarily engaged in the preparation of sites for new construction and establishments primarily engaged in subdividing land for sale as building sites also are included in this sector.
5. Other Services
Quit rate: 2 percent
Total quits: 1.348 million
Description: The Other Services (except Public Administration) sector comprises establishments engaged in providing services not specifically provided for elsewhere in the classification system. Establishments in this sector are primarily engaged in activities such as equipment and machinery repairing, promoting or administering religious activities, grantmaking, advocacy, providing drycleaning and laundry services, personal care services, death care services, pet care services, photofinishing services, temporary parking services, and dating services.
4. Arts, Entertainment and Recreation
Quit rate: 2.5 percent
Total quits: 663,000
Description: The Arts, Entertainment and Recreation sector includes a wide range of establishments that operate facilities or provide services to meet varied cultural, entertainment and recreational interests of their patrons. This sector comprises establishments that are involved in producing, promoting or participating in live performances, events or exhibits intended for public viewing; establishments that preserve and exhibit objects and sites of historical, cultural or educational interest; and establishments that operate facilities or provide services that enable patrons to participate in recreational activities or pursue amusement, hobby and leisure-time interests.
3. Professional and Business Services
Quit rate: 2.6 percent
Total quits: 6.195 million
Description: Professional and Business Services include establishments that specialize in performing professional, scientific and technical activities for others; establishments that hold securities of companies and enterprises for the purpose of owning a controlling interest or influencing management decisions; and establishments performing routine support activities for the day-to-day operations of other organizations.
2. Retail Trade
Quit rate: 2.9 percent
Total quits: 5.47 million
Description: The Retail Trade sector comprises establishments engaged in retailing merchandise, generally without transformation, and rendering services incidental to the sale of merchandise.
1. Accommodation and Food Services
Quit rate: 4.2 percent
Total quits: 6.514 million
Description: The Accommodation and Food Services sector comprises establishments providing customers with lodging and/or preparing meals, snacks and beverages for immediate consumption. The sector includes both accommodation and food services establishments because the two activities are often combined at the same establishment.