Business bounces back with job levels on the up

Confidence
is growing in the UK economy, with most sectors set to increase staff levels
this quarter.

The Manpower
Quarterly Survey of Employment Prospects finds employers expect to recruit more
staff in the second quarter of 2002.

The
research, based on interviews with 2,000 businesses, reports the net balance of
employers increasing staff is at 15 per cent following the fall to 0 per cent
last quarter.

Every
sector apart from electronics anticipates a rise in staff levels, with hotels
and restaurants the most buoyant. On balance, 31 per cent of employers in this
sector plan to hire new staff over the next three months.

Small
companies employing under 50 staff are the most optimistic with 19 per cent
predicting the creation of new jobs between April and June.

Geographically,
all regions expect an increase in jobs, with Scotland showing the highest net
balance of 22 per cent. Four regions – Scotland, Wales, Yorkshire and
Humberside and the North – are more confident than this time last year.

The
UK survey mirrors the findings of Manpower’s US research which also predicts a
more buoyant jobs market in this quarter.

Ian
Herbertson, managing director of Manpower, said: "Business seems to have
bounced back from last quarter’s downturn, when the impact of the US recession
and 11 September hit employment prospects hard. We believe there is reason to
be cautiously optimistic, but for a full recovery we need to see this
maintained."

www.manpower.co.uk

By Ross Wigham

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