WASHINGTON (AP) -- U.S. employers posted the most job openings in four years in June, a positive sign that hiring may pick up.
The Labor Department reports that job openings rose to a seasonally adjusted 3.8 million in June, up from 3.7 million in May. That's the most since July 2008. Layoffs also fell.
This follows Friday's report that said employers in July added the most jobs in five months. A rise in openings could signal better hiring in the coming months. It typically takes one to three months to fill a job.
Even with the increase, hiring is competitive. There were 12.7 million unemployed people in June, or an average of 3.4 unemployed people for each job.
That's down a bit from May and much lower than the nearly 7-to-1 ratio in July 2009, just after the recession ended. In a healthy job market, the ratio is usually around 2 to 1.