A million more jobs than job seekers. Slow Q1 economic growth predicted as employers struggle to find skilled workers.

More signs of a slowdown. Calculated Risk’s Bill McBride posts on new estimates of Q1 GDP growth from Goldman Sachs (“We lowered our Q1 GDP tracking estimate by two tenths to +0.4%”), the Atlanta Fed (0.4 percent), and the New York Fed (0.4 percent). He concludes,

These early estimates suggest GDP will be slightly positive in Q1.

There’s a big difference between “slightly positive” and robust growth. We’ve warned of uncertainty and slow growth previously.

And with the slow growth we see persistent workforce challenges confronting employers, reported again by the Associated Press. 

U.S. employers posted nearly 7.6 million open jobs in January, near a record high set in November, evidence that businesses are still hungry for workers despite signs the economy has slowed.

The Labor Department said Friday that hiring also rose and the number of people quitting their jobs picked up. Quits are a sign of a healthy economy, because people typically leave a job for another, usually higher-paying, one.

The tally of available jobs now outnumbers the unemployed by roughly 1 million. Openings began to outpace the unemployed last spring, for the first time in the 18 years the data has been tracked.

The state revenue forecast comes out next week. We’ll be interested in how and whether the mounting national concerns affect estimates.