U.S. online job demand fell in September after modest August gains, but was still higher than April’s low point, The Conference Board reported — all of which suggests that the economy is slowly recovering but not without its occasional stumble.

There were about 102,000 fewer job vacancies online this outgoing month, or about 3.36 million. Even so, the trend is slightly positive: Job demand has increased by about 201,000 since April.

 “While the trend has been modestly upward and averaged 40,000 per month over the last five months, the labor market continues to have a hard time gaining momentum,” said Gad Levanon, senior economist at The Conference Board. 

“The Conference Board Employment Trends Index, which has been basically flat for three straight months, also helps highlight the difficulty the labor market is facing. With a growing consensus of a weak recovery, businesses seem to be slow to boost advertising for vacant or new positions.”

Healthcare and technical professions continue to lead demand “September was also the second month in a row that advertised vacancies in these occupations were significantly above levels this time last year,” said Levanon.

Individual occupations showing increases included registered nurses, physical and occupational therapists, speech-language pathologists, and physician assistants.