Photo: Andy Cross/The Denver Post via Getty Images

U.S. workers are quitting their jobs again, a sign of confidence in the economy and a very good reason to feel optimistic on Independence Day.

The big picture: 2018 is the first year on record that the U.S. has more available jobs than people looking for jobs. And at the same time, "workers are choosing to leave their jobs at the fastest rate since the internet boom 17 years ago," the WSJ's David Harrison and Eric Morath report.

  • "3.4 million Americans quit their jobs in April, near a 2001 peak and twice the 1.7 million who were laid off from jobs in April."
  • "Job-hopping is happening across industries including retail, food service and construction, a sign of broad-based labor-market dynamism."

Why it matters: "Job-switchers saw roughly 30% larger annual pay increases in May than those who stayed put over the past 12 months..."

Be smart: We're still expecting major job losses from automation, without a solid answer for what we'll do about it.

  • As Axios' Steve LeVine noted earlier this year, "Congress and the Trump administration have yet to create a coherent policy response... including the potential for decades of flat wages and joblessness. But cities and regions are starting to act on their own."

Go deeper

Updated 21 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Large coronavirus outbreaks leading to high death rates — Coronavirus cases are at an all-time high ahead of Election Day — Fauci says U.S. may not return to normal until 2022
  2. Politics: Space Force's No. 2 general tests positive for coronavirus
  3. World: Taiwan reaches a record 200 days with no local coronavirus cases
  4. Europe faces "stronger and deadlier" wave France imposes lockdown Germany to close bars and restaurants for a month.
  5. Sports: Boston Marathon delayed MLB to investigate Dodgers player who joined celebration after positive COVID test.
Caitlin Owens, author of Vitals
29 mins ago - Health

Large coronavirus outbreaks leading to high death rates

Data: The COVID Tracking Project; Chart: Sara Wise/Axios

Many of the states where coronavirus cases have recently skyrocketed are also seeing the highest death rates in the nation, a painful reminder that wherever the virus goes, death eventually follows.

Between the lines: Deaths usually lag behind cases by a few weeks. Given America's record-high case counts, it's reasonable to expect that death rates across the country will continue to rise in tandem.

Amy Harder, author of Generate
52 mins ago - Science

Pandemic scrambles Americans' acceptance of science

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

The pandemic is throwing a wrench into Americans' understanding of science, which has big implications for climate change.

Driving the news: Recent focus groups in battleground states suggest some voters are more skeptical of scientists in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, while surveys reveal the persistence of a deep partisan divide.

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