India Most Optimistic of Hiring

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Mar. 11 – The Indian economy, Asia’s third largest isn’t looking too optimistic about hiring new employees in the next quarter April – June. In a 33 nation survey by HR consulting firm Manpower, India however topped the ranks for the country most likely to hire, even as only 25 percent of the 3,600 firms surveyed said they would hire new employees in the next quarter. The mining and construction, finance, insurance and real estate sectors have seen the most job losses and are the most affected industries, while the services industry is the least affected.

Manpower said that although India’s net employment outlook dipped from 43 percent in the second quarter of 2008 to 25 percent this quarter, a year later, sentiments had improved from a net employment outlook of 19 percent registered last quarter.

"(Employers) remain hesitant about adding employees at this time," Manpower's India chief, Naresh Malhan, told Reuters. "The modest improvement (quarter-on-quarter) … could be the result of employers reappraising their cutbacks of the previous quarter." Fears are that if the economy further contracts to 6 percent growth, employment will be further affected.

Comparatively in the U.S., the Manpower survey showed that there were more employers who plan to fire employees than there are to hire employees. This is the worst employment scenario since the depression in 1982. The net employment outlook for the U.S. dipped to -1 for the second quarter compared to 10 for the first quarter this year and 15 for the same quarter a year ago. The US jobless rate rose to 8.1 percent in February, the highest in 16 years.

Similarly in Europe, the labor markets of Ireland, Spain, the UK and Italy all proved to be dismal as were most of the labor markets for the G7 countries.