The Conference Board Employment Trends Index (ETI) increased again in May for the ninth consecutive month. The index now stands at 95.7, up from April's revised figure of 95.2. The index is up almost 9 percent from a year ago.

"The ongoing growth in the Employment Trends Index suggests that the disappointing uptick in payroll employment in May could just be a one-month blip, and that jobs will likely expand further in the next several months," said Gad Levanon, associate director for macroeconomic research at The Conference Board. "However, as some of the components of the ETI have yet to signal robust gains, the pace of recovery in employment may remain moderate."

This month's increase in the Employment Trends Index was driven by positive contributions from five out of the eight components. The improving indicators were: Percentage of Respondents Who Say They Find "Jobs Hard to Get," Number of Temporary Employees, Part-Time Workers for Economic Reasons, Industrial Production and Real Manufacturing and Trade Sales.

The Employment Trends Index aggregates eight labor-market indicators, each of which has proven accurate in its own area. Aggregating individual indicators into a composite index filters out so-called "noise" to show underlying trends more clearly.

The eight labor-market indicators aggregated into the Employment Trends Index include:

  • Percentage of Respondents Who Say They Find "Jobs Hard to Get" (The Conference Board Consumer Confidence Survey)
  • Initial Claims for Unemployment Insurance (U.S. Department of Labor)
  • Percentage of Firms With Positions Not Able to Fill Right Now (National Federation of Independent Business Research Foundation)
  • Number of Employees Hired by the Temporary-Help Industry (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics)
  • Part-Time Workers for Economic Reasons (BLS)
  • Job Openings (BLS)
  • Industrial Production (Federal Reserve Board)
  • Real Manufacturing and Trade Sales (U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis)