Workforces Will Hold Steady in the Third Quarter

Seven percent of employers in Manpower’s quarterly outlook survey said they expect to cut payrolls this summer. Twenty-nine percent said they’ll be hiring. More than half are holding the line with their current head count.

June 12, 2007

More than half of U.S. employers plan no additions to their workforces over the summer months, while 29 percent said they will increase their hiring, according to results of the Manpower Employment Outlook Survey released Tuesday, June 12. Seven percent of the 14,000 employers surveyed for the quarterly, seasonally adjusted report expect to cut payrolls. Six percent said they are unsure about their hiring plans.

"Employers are holding steady with their employment projections for the third quarter and taking a wait-and-see approach as they look toward year end," Manpower chairman and CEO Jeffrey Joerres said in a statement.

Employers in select industries—construction, wholesale and retail trade, and finance/insurance/real estate—have hiring plans that are unchanged from the second quarter, but Manpower says they are less inclined to add staff than they were a year ago. Joerres says the third-quarter projections are "a sign that the moderate decline in these industry sectors is likely to continue through the next three months."

Regionally, job prospects are strongest in the West. Employers in the Northeast continue to be the least optimistic about hiring, particular in the nondurable goods manufacturing sector, where Manpower notes a "significant weakening" in job prospects.

Beyond the U.S., employers are bullish on their hiring plans. Employers in Germany and Norway are reporting their most optimistic hiring plans since Manpower began surveying the countries in 2003. Employers in Singapore, Peru, India, Argentina, New Zealand, Australia, Costa Rica, Japan and Hong Kong reported the strongest third-quarter hiring prospects. Meanwhile, employers in Italy, Belgium and France expect to hire few workers.

—Staff report

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