Predictions Are for Hiring Improvement in 2011

Hiring predictions for 2011 are starting to come in and what they say is that we can expect more jobs next year, though there’ll be no partying like it’s 1999.

Manpower issued its respected Employment Outlook Survey on Tuesday that said employers anticipate small staffing gains in the first quarter of 2011. Although the outlook, says Manpower, is still below the average of the past 10 years, the picture is nonetheless brighter.

The seasonally adjusted  Net Employment Outlook is +9 percent, says Manpower. That’s up from the +5 percent of a year ago and up from the +5 percent for the current, 4th quarter of 2010.

The Net Employment Outlook is the percentage of employers saying they plan to hire over the percentage who expect to cut staff. Almost three-quarters of the 18,000 surveyed employers say they expect to make no changes in staffing.

Another survey, this one of CFOs done by the Bank of America, says larger companies are even more likely to hire in 2011. The survey says that 47 percent of businesses with revenue in the $25 million to $2 billion range plan to increase staff during the year. That’s a big improvement over the 28 percent who said that at the start of 2010.

The survey also showed them somewhat more optimistic about their own company’s prospects. Last year 61 percent of the CFOs surveyed expected improvement in their company’s revenue. This year, 64 percent do.

It may not be a booster club for the economy — they gave the economy a score of 47 out of 100 — but it does add to the sense that the U.S. is climbing out of the hole.

Brian Moynihan, B of A CEO and president, said in a PBS interview the other night, “I think we’re in a recovery and we continue to make progress for it.”

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To get companies to do more hiring, Moynihan said they have to believe that their top line is going to be improving and the recovery will continue.

That’s not so easy, of course. Earlier this year, when the U.S. Census was hiring hundreds of thousands of workers and the stock market was rising, there was a sense of optimism that the nation was on the right track. The Consumer Confidence Index in May was at 63.3, its highest point in two years. Grant Thornton’s Business Optimism Index stood at 67.6, more than 13 points higher than the year before. And 63 percent of the business leaders it surveyed thought the U.S. economy was improving.

Now, business leaders are more cautious and consumers wary. The Consumer Confidence Index is rising, but only a bit every month, after falling sharply since May. In November it was at 54.1. The most recent Grant Thornton survey says only 47 percent of business leaders believe the economy is improving. Better than the August survey when only 34 percent thought that.

What these surveys and others are saying is that most of us — consumers and business leaders — are hopeful, but we need to be convinced that what the data is showing is both real and sustainable.

John Zappe is the editor of TLNT.com and a contributing editor of ERE.net. John was a newspaper reporter and editor until his geek gene lead him to launch his first website in 1994. He developed and managed online newspaper employment sites and sold advertising services to recruiters and employers. Before joining ERE Media in 2006, John was a senior consultant and analyst with Advanced Interactive Media and previously was Vice President of Digital Media for the Los Angeles Newspaper Group.

Besides writing for ERE, John consults with staffing firms and employment agencies, providing content and managing their social media programs. He also works with organizations and businesses to assist with audience development and marketing. In his spare time  he can be found hiking in the California mountains or competing in canine agility and obedience competitions.

You can contact him here.

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2 Comments on “Predictions Are for Hiring Improvement in 2011

  1. http://web.rollins.edu/~wseyfried/forecast.htm

    Recent Economic Forecasts

    Economic forecasting survey, Dec 2010 (WSJ): economic growth = 2.6% in 2010Q4, 3% in 2011; unemployment at 9.4% in June 2011, 9% at end of 2011; inflation = 1.8% in 2011

    Wells Fargo Securities Economic Forecast (latest forecast: Annual Forecast, Dec 2010): economic growth = 2.6% in fourth quarter, 2.6% in 2011 and 3.3% in 2012; core PCE inflation = 1% in 2011 and 1.5% in 2012; unemployment rate rises to 10% in the first quarter of 2011; declining to 9.6% in the fourth quarter of 2011 and 8.8% by the end of 2012; Fed begins to raise interest rates in the third quarter of 2012

    Livingston Survey (latest survey – Dec 2010): economic growth = 2.5% in first half of 2011 and 2.9% in second half of 2011; unemployment rate = 9.4% in June 2011 and 9.2% in Dec 2011; inflation (CPI) = 1.6% for 2011 and 2% for 2012

    Fed Forecast as of Nov, 2010: economic growth = 3-3.6% in 2011 and 3.6-4.5% in 2012 (note: these are from 4th quarter to 4th quarter while other forecasts compare yearly averages); unemployment rate = 8.9-9.1% in 2011 and 7.1-7.5% in 2012 (estimates are for 4th quarter of the respective year); natural rate of unemployment = 5 to 6% (range = 5 to 6.3%); inflation as measured by core PCE index of 0.8% to 1% in 2010, 0.9 to 1.6% in 2011 and 1 to 1.6% in 2012

    NABE (Bloomberg, Nov 2010): forecasts for 2011 – economic growth = 2.6%, core inflation = 1.3%, unemployment rate = 9.2% at end of year, 10-year Treasury = 3.25% at end of 2011

    Univ. of Michigan Economic Forecast (executive summary – Nov 18, 2010): economic growth = 1.9% in Q4 of 2010, 2.3% in 2011, 3.3% in 2012; core inflation (CPI) = 1% in 2010, 1.2% in 2011 and 1.7% in 2012; unemployment rate averages 9.6% in 2011 and declines to 9% by end of 2012

    Survey of Professional Forecasters (latest survey Nov 2010): economic growth = 2.2% in Q4, 2.5% in 2011, 2.9% in 2012, 3% in 2013; core inflation (PCE) = 1.2% in 2011 and 1.6% in 2012 (overall PCE inflation = 1.2% in 2010, 1.7% in 2011, 1.8% in 2012); unemployment rate = 9.6% in fourth quarter 2010, 9% in 2011Q4; average unemployment rate = 8.7% in 2012

    Bloomberg (Nov 11, 2010): economic growth = 2.2% in fourth quarter 2010, quarterly growth rises to 3.2% in fourth quarter of 2011; unemployment averages 9.3% in 2011

    Quarterly economic survey (USA Today – Oct 2010): economic growth = 2.2% in fourth quarter, 2.8% in 2011; unemployment = 9.7% at end of 2010, 9.2% in fourth quarter of 2011; inflation = 1.1% in 2010, 1.7% in 2011

    Associated Press Survey (Oct 2010): unemployment declines to 9% by end of 2011; economic growth = 2.7% in 2011, inflation = 1.7% in 2011

    NABE forecast (Oct 2010): economic growth = 2.6% in 2010 and 2011; unemployment = 9.5% in summer 2011, 9.2% by end of 2011; core inflation = 1% in 2010, 1.4% in 2011, fed funds rate = 0.5% by end of 2011; budget deficit = $1.2 trillion in 2011

    IMF (Oct 2010): includes global forecasts; US economic growth = 2.6% in 2010, 2.3% in 2011

    OECD forecast (see p3 – Sep 2010): economic growth = 2.6% in 2010 and 2011; unemployment rate 9.7% by end of 2010, 8.5% by end of 2011, inflation =0.8% in 2010 and 1.1% in 2011

    CNN-Money survey (Sep 20): lists forecasts of key economic variables by 31 economists; average forecasts for 2011 – unemployment in Dec 2011 = 9%, economic growth = 2.8%, inflation = 1.7%

    Reuters Survey (Sep 8, 2010): economic growth = 1.8% in 3rd quarter, 2.1% in 4th quarter, 2.4% in 2011

    CBO (Aug 2010): note – assumes all Bush tax cuts expire and other policy changes that are unlikely (need to make forecast assuming current policy; results in weaker forecast); economic growth (end of year comparisons) = 2.8% in 2010, 2% in 2011; unemployment = 9.3% in fourth quarter 2010, 8.8% in 2011Q4, core PCE inflation = 0.9% in 2010 and 1.1% in 2011; growth in potential GDP = 2.1% from 2010-2014 and 2.4% from 2015-2020

    OMB (July 23, 2010 – see p9): economic growth (end of year comparisons) = 3.1% in 2010, 4% in 2011; unemployment = 9.6% in 2010, 8.7% in 2011 (declines to 6% at the end of 2014); inflation = 1% in 2010, 1.6% in 2011; natural rate of unemployment = 5.2%, growth in potential GDP = 2.5%

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