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Great news: lots of Americans just quit their jobs

"Eat it, paperwork. I'm quitting."
"Eat it, paperwork. I'm quitting."

Today there's yet another encouraging sign that the job market is healing: lots of people are writing resignation letters. 2.8 million Americans quit their jobs in September — that's 300,000 more than in August and the highest number since April 2008.

The quits rate — the number of people leaving their jobs as a share of all workers — also spiked to 2 percent (that new spike is circled in yellow on the graph below).


That's one of the sharpest upticks in a while and is the quits rate's highest level since April 2008. This is great news because the quits rate is generally taken as a sign of how current workers feel the job market is — if they feel they can easily find a job elsewhere, they are more likely to leave their current work. If the job market looks terrifying, they are more likely to cling to even a job they hate for dear life.

There was plenty of other great news in this report as well. One other trend that is slowly inching toward normal is the number of unemployed people per opening, as Justin Wolfers tweeted.

As he says, things are nowhere near normal in the job market, but the last couple of jobs reports, plus these latest figures, seem to confirm that we're on our way there.