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Manpower - U.S. Employers Foresee Continued Stability in Workforce Levels

Manpower - U.S. Employers Foresee Continued Stability in Workforce Levels

Employers Report Slightly Elevated Confidence Compared to 12 Months Ago

Hiring decision makers continue to take a measured but optimistic approach to hiring plans for Quarter 2 2013, according to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Surveyreleased today by ManpowerGroup. According to the seasonally adjusted survey results, the Net Employment Outlook for Quarter 2 2013 is 11%, a 1 percentage point decrease from Quarter 1 2013 and slightly elevated from 10% during the same period last year.

As a supplement to the Quarter 2 2013 survey results, an infographic is available for download at "Where the Jobs Are" offers a snapshot of data and trends from the survey, including key state and metro area-specific Outlooks along with an industry forecast.

This quarter's research concludes:

Positive Trend in All States and Metro Areas: Employers in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia report positive hiring plans. North Dakota remains a leader among the states with a significant increase in job prospects as the Outlook rises from 21% in Quarter 1 2013 to 30% in Quarter 2 2013. Employers in all Metropolitan Statistical Areas also report positive hiring plans, with Outlooks ranging from 3% to 23%.

Fewest Employers Decreasing Staff Levels: The overall percentage of employers who anticipate staff reductions is at 5 percent. This is the smallest percentage of employers planning to reduce headcounts since Quarter 3 2000, when a 5 percent rate was also reported.

Stable Hiring Plans Reach Peak: 73 percent of employers plan to maintain current staff levels during Quarter 2 2013. This rivals the previous strongest percentage in this category, which was last at this level in Quarter 1 2011.

Improvement in Construction Sector: The Construction industry sector anticipates a considerable increase in hiring in Quarter 2 2013 in the Northeast, Midwest and West. With an increase of 5 percentage points in the Midwest and 4 in the West, these regions expect a greater increase in hiring compared to one year ago at this time, while employers in the Northeast anticipate an increase consistent with traditional Quarter 2 data.

"Quarter over quarter our data reports slow and steady hiring projections, which is good news compared with the hiring downturns we experienced several years ago," said Jonas Prising, ManpowerGroup president. "The main priority for employers today should be to refine management methods to build winning teams so they have the right people in place when the economy takes off again."

Of the more than 18,000 employers surveyed, 18 percent expect to add to their workforces in Quarter 2 2013, while 5 percent expect a decrease in payrolls, resulting in a Net Employment Outlook of 13%. When seasonally adjusted, the Net Employment Outlook becomes 11%. Seventy-three percent of employers expect no change in their hiring plans. The final 4 percent of employers indicate they are undecided about their hiring intentions.

"As the economic tailwinds of the housing, banking and auto industries continue to pick up, we are seeing a gradual acceleration in hiring, accompanied by fewer companies decreasing staff," said Prising. "The considerable growth of the Construction sector is a reflection of continued progress and employers are responding to this as outside momentum gives them more confidence to push their plans forward."

Hiring Outlooks for Industry Sectors and Regions
For Quarter 2 2013, employers have a positive Outlook in all 13 industry sectors included in the survey: Leisure & Hospitality (24%), Professional & Business Services (18%), Wholesale & Retail Trade (15%), Mining (14%), Nondurable Goods Manufacturing (14%), Transportation & Utilities (14%), Information (13%), Durable Goods Manufacturing (12%), Financial Activities (11%), Construction (10%), Other Services (9%), Education & Health Services (7%) and Government (7%). When the industry sector data is compared quarter-over-quarter, employers in the the Construction, Nondurable Goods Manufacturing, Transportation & Utilities and Leisure & Hospitality sectors anticipate a considerable hiring increase, while employers in the Mining, Durable Goods Manufacturing and Professional & Business Services sectors anticipate a moderate hiring increase. Employers in the Other Services industry sector look for the hiring pace to slightly increase. Staff levels are expected to remain relatively stable among employers in four industry sectors: Information, Financial Activities, Education & Health Services and Government. The Wholesale & Retail Trade sector anticipates a slight decrease in the hiring pace.

A positive Net Employment Outlook is reported in all four U.S. regions. When seasonal variations are removed from the data, quarter-over-quarter plans to add employees remain essentially unchanged among employers in the Northeast, Midwest and South, while employers in the West expect hiring to slightly decrease. Compared to one year ago at this time, employers in all regions expect a relatively stable hiring environment for Quarter 2 2013.


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