April 9, 2012

Staffing & Employment News: Disappointing Jobs Report, But Confidence and Strong Numbers Elsewhere

Staffing & Employment News

Disappointing Jobs Report, But Confidence and Strong Numbers Elsewhere

Friday’s jobs report disappointed with only half (120,000) the jobs created in March compared to the month previous. ADP had announced just prior that the U.S. private-sector employment rose by 209,000 in March. For the three months through February, an average of 245,000 payrolls was added monthly, marking the strongest gains since 2006.

 

Goods-producing industry employment rose 31,000 after a 29,000 gain in February. For the latest month, manufacturing increased 37,000; construction dipped 7,000; and mining inched up 1,000. Inventory building was a key driver of growth in the October-December quarter.

 

The unemployment rate nudged downward to 8.2 percent from 8.3 percent – a fall of nearly a full percentage point since the summer. The U.S. economy grew 3 percent in the final quarter of 2011, the best pace in a year and a half.

 

Prior to March’s employment report, employee confidence reached its highest level since October 2007 according to the latest Randstad Employment Report, hitting 55.5 in March. This is the third month of consecutive increase. Joanie Ruge, senior vice president and chief employment analyst for Randstad U.S. said “It seems as though optimism in the employment picture is outweighing any mixed signals being given by other economic reports. In fact, the Index confirms, from a frontline perspective, an optimistic and hopeful outlook around the number job openings, job stability and the future strength of companies. Although the latest Index still remains five points below the historical high, it also stands 15.4 points higher than our Index’s all-time low of 40.1 in January 2007.”

 

And American CEOs are also seeing increased momentum for U.S. Economy according to the Business Roundtable’s First Quarter 2012 CEO Economic Outlook Survey. CEOs expressed improving expectations for sales, capital spending and employment, with a notable increase to 96.9 in Q1 of 2012, up from 77.9 in Q4 of 2011. In terms of the overall U.S. economy, Business Roundtable members estimate real GDP will grow by 2.3 percent in 2012, up from last quarter’s estimate of 2.0.

 

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February 6, 2012

Staffing & Employment News: Recovery Gaining Speed

Staffing & Employment News

Recovery Gaining Speed

 

The economy produced more jobs than expected in January, with an overall net increase of 243,000 and a private sector addition of 257,000. The last two months of 2011 had a net upward revision of 60,000. Private-sector gains were led by professional and business services (+70,000), leisure and hospitality (+44,000), and manufacturing.

Unemployment dipped as well, falling to the lowest rate in three years. The household survey indicated a drop to 8.3 percent from 8.5 percent in December.

The U.S. Economy grew by 2.8 percent in Q4 2011 according to the Commerce Department. This was 1% higher than A3. The Federal Reserve’s Business Outlook Survey showed regional manufacturing activity continued to expand moderately in January, and firms continued to report hiring increases. The survey’s broad indicators stayed in positive territory again this month.

Recruiters in specialized sectors are staying busy. Greg Schreiner, Clean Tech Recruitment Manager at Redfish Technology, reports that 2011 finished off with a bang and January 2012 hasn’t showed any signs of slowing. “The hiring managers I work with a expressing continued optimism overall” stated Schreiner, “it is an exciting time in CleanTech recruiting, especially in Solar, ESCO, and renewable technologies.”

A recent survey by Talent Technology reveals that 63.4% of respondents see signs of economic pressure letting up within their organization in 2012, and 51.4% expect to increase in size within the next 12 months (by about 12%).

The Vistage CEO Survey reported the largest quarterly gain in confidence since 2009 as of Q4, and the employment picture in 2012 is looking rosy. Starting off the year with strong signs of improvement in the economy, hiring too is on the rise. The Q4 2011 CEO Confidence Index reported 94 percent of CEOs expecting their firm’s total number of employees to increase or remain the same in the next year.

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