UK staff more likely than Euro colleagues to face dole queue

Employees are more likely to be made redundant in the UK
over the next year than anywhere else in Europe according to research.

The
annual UPS Europe Business Monitor reveals that 36 per cent of UK firms expect
to downsize during 2002,
compared to an average of 30 per cent of companies from other European
countries.

In
the UK, 15 per cent of
business leaders expect to take on more employees and 47 per cent predict
staffing levels will remain the same.

The
study finds that the events of 11 September had a bigger impact in the UK,
where 17 per cent of respondents report laying off staff as a direct result,
than the rest of Europe where only 5 per cent of organisations axed staff after
the terror attacks.

With
the exception of Spain,
all European workforces are expected to contract rather than expand over the
next year.

Despite
the gloomy predictions on job losses, 56 per cent of UK business leaders expect companies’
performances to pick up
over the next 12 months.

Across
the rest of Europe the proportion of organisations that are optimistic about
their performance over the next year is only 44 per cent.

The
UPS Europe Business Monitor surveyed 1,456 business leaders from 15,000 major
companies in the Netherlands, Belgium, France, Germany, Spain, Italy and the UK
between 5 November and 12 December 2001.

By Ben Willmott

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