In keeping with my tradition of putting economic time series together any old way and claiming a copyright on the result, I'm introducing a new chart which I'll call the Job Seekers' Success Index™ (JSSI). This is the ratio of the total (not net) number of new jobs created to the number of people unemployed in a given month, my proxy for the former being the net weekly change in employment for a given month plus the average weekly initial jobless claims reported in that month. Here's the JSSI since 1967.
The JSSI has a sawtooth pattern, but underneath that it seems to be in a long-term decline. That decline should be reflected in increasing spells of unemployment, and (though the spike around 1983 makes it somewhat difficult to detect), it appears that the prediction is borne out:
On the other hand, the JII™ may drop below 0.002 (fewer than one of five hundred employed people losing his job and filing for unemployment in any given week) this month for the first time since the beginning of economagic's initial jobless claims time series in 1967.
The upshot is that there appears to be a pair of long-term trends at work - jobs are getting more secure for those who are employed, but more difficult to find for those who are not.