The published statistics for Employment and Unemployment only talk about the NET changes. But it's often useful to look at the GROSS changes as well. Now, for years, the Bureau of Labor statistics has published the Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey which looks at Job Openings, Hires, Fires, Quits and other job leaving. it's for the entire month (unlike the snapshot from the Employment Survey) but unfortunately it isn't published until a few months after the month in question (latest release was for October 2010. But in the last year, you can find on the BLS website and experimental series Current Labor Force Status Flows that looks at the Labor Force changes. Definitions: Employed: Worked at least 1 hour for pay or 15 hours unpaid in family business/farm in the previous week. Unemployed: Did not work previous week, but actively looked for work in the previous 4 weeks. Not in the Labor Force: Did not work or look for work. Other inflows: people previously not counted who are now part of the Adult Civilian Non-Institutional Population: people who turned 16, got out of prison, the military or a mental institute, and immigrants. Other outflows: people previously counted who are no longer part of the Population by dying, joing the military, going to prison, being committed or emmigrating. What I find interesting are the changes from and to Not in the Labor Force. Between November 14th and Dec 18th, 3,640,000 people who hadn't been looking for work started looking and found work, compared to 2,648 Unemployed people who found work in the same time period. Also, 3,700,000 went from working to not in the Labor Force, and 3,097,000 Unemployed stopped looking.