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September 16, 2003
Survey Finds Uptick in U.S. Hiring Forecast
U.S. employers expect to strengthen their hiring activity in the fourth quarter of 2003, according to a quarterly survey by Manpower Inc.

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Of the 16,000 U.S. employers that the firm surveyed, 22 percent said they plan to increase hiring activity for the October - December period, while 11 percent expect a decrease in employment opportunities. Another 62 percent of employers foresee no change in hiring, and 5 percent are uncertain of their staffing plans. When the seasonal variations are removed from the data, the survey results for this quarter mark the first increase in job prospects since the first quarter of 2003.

"The improvement in hiring expectations for the fourth quarter marks a reversal of the downward trend we have seen in the U.S. survey data since the beginning of the year," says Jeffrey A. Joerres, chairman & CEO of Manpower. "Although the survey results are somewhat weaker than the fourth quarter of 2002, employers report a consistent level of job growth across the majority of industry sectors and all four regions of the U.S."

Employers in the Northeast, Midwest and West regions report equal hiring forecasts for the final three months of the year. The South has the most promising employment outlook again this quarter and has since the third quarter 2002.

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