MERIC NEWS LETTER

Third Quarter Employment Outlook: "Conservative"

Sixty-one percent of Midwest employers expect no change in hiring, 28 percent foresee an increase, six percent a decrease and five percent don't know -- a hiring pace that's "the most conservative" of the four regions surveyed, says the Manpower Employer Outlook Survey. The survey is a global, quarterly forecast of employment trends. 16,000 employers were surveyed in the U.S.

Of the four regions (Midwest, Northeast, South and West) surveyed, those in the South and West were most optimistic about hiring.

Manpower's first quarter Midwestern employer forecasts were for a 19 percent increase, an 11 percent decrease, and 66 percent no change; for the second quarter, 27 percent increase, 5 percent decrease and 64 percent no change.

The total number of jobs in Missouri increased 0.6 percent from the fourth quarter of 2005 to the first quarter of 2006. (Seasonally adjusted total nonfarm payroll data from the Current Employment Statistics program.)

Nationwide, 57 percent of U.S. employers surveyed foresee no change in hiring, while 31 percent anticipate an increase. The remaining 12 percent are split between a decline in hiring and undecided.

Among the ten Midwestern industry sectors surveyed, durable goods manufacturing, education and public administration have the best outlook for third quarter job seekers.

Internationally, India, Japan, Hong Kong, Ireland and Belgium are hot -- and China is not.

See the full report.

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