Manpower: Hiring Plans Hit New Low

Um, this isn’t exactly consistent with the recovery story. From MarketWatch:

Employers’ hiring plans for the upcoming fourth quarter dropped to their lowest level in the history of Manpower’s Employment Outlook Survey, which started in 1962.

A net -3% of employers said they’ll hire in the fourth quarter, down from -2% in the third quarter, on a seasonally adjusted basis…. Before this year, the survey’s previous low point was a net 1% hiring outlook for the third quarter of 1982…

A year ago, a seasonally adjusted net 9% of firms said they would hire in the fourth quarter. … Manpower doesn’t measure the number of jobs. The survey’s margin of error is +/- 0.49%.

And the only sector with a net positive number of establishments seeking to hire is… services! How nice to be an arm of the government, when ironically, the government sector is in negative territory, hiring-wise:

For each industry, here are the figures for the net employment outlook for the fourth quarter, not seasonally adjusted, in order of most negative outlook first.

Construction, -10%, down from 2% for the third quarter

Mining, -9%, flat from -9%

Transportation and utilities, -9%, down from -3%

Government, -8%, down from -4%

Manufacturing, durable goods, -8%, down from -6%

Information, -5%, down from -4%

Manufacturing, nondurable goods, -3%, down from 0%

Other services, -1%, down from 0%

Financial activities, 1%, down from 2%

Print Friendly, PDF & Email


  1. ndk

    State and municipal governments look set to wield the hatchet with less federal funds available, after it’s become clear that revenues aren’t going to flip back to their prior highs any day soon. Most of the others, including my day job industry, seem reasonable. Does anyone know how effective a predictor this series has been in the past?

    I’m totally gobsmacked by the financial activities number. Maybe it’s just a lot of back-end staff that will actually be making and storing loan tapes, or even real live human loan officers.

    Or maybe it’s fluffers for the traders.

    I won’t hazard a guess. But it doesn’t smell like healthy rebalancing from here.

  2. Brick

    Unemployment is the difference between those being made unemployed and hiring. What this shows is that although not as many people are being laid off there really are no new jobs. This is why unemployment ratcheted up while new claims declines.
    It is also interesting that the BLS birth death model figures added 40000 jobs last month for construction when in reality there were probably no new jobs. If you think about commercial construction with all the big jobs started before the recession coming to an end then this is not surprising.
    Transportation and utilities are one of the other interesting figures flagging more job losses along with government as local states run out of money. The clearest indicator though is for manufacturing for me which suggests after a period of stability probably helped by cash for clunkers, manufacturing is on the way down again.

    These figures point to a further dip in the economy, unless of course we all end up working for the banks.

    1. Uhre

      Most of us are already working for the banks! The banks and developers…. Those especially who went out and bought or built businesses at a 1.0 – 1.3 Debt Coverage Ratio. Man, who would have thought this bubble was going to burst? I watch commercial land prices increase from $3.00/ft to $23.00/sf. Ag land from $300.00 an acre to $3000.00 an acre. Who in their right mind was thinking all of this was a good buy? It’s the bankers that lent our deposits and taxes on frivolous spending. That is the root cause of all the problems. They should be the ones sitting in jail for reckless lending as well as the corrupt politicians that passed the bill that deregulated it. No one has been held accountable for the F*’d up mess that has been created.

  3. Siggy

    All the hype about a developing recovering is exposed by this data. The Labor market is disintergrating. Unemployment, however it is measured will likely increase. This is not the stuff of a recovery.

  4. el loco

    No purchasing power, skyrocketing personal debt, shaky home values=double dip recession!! I’ll bet 1000 to 1, any takers?

  5. Jim S.

    My wife owns a house in another state that she was unable to sell after our marriage. She tried for several years to sell it at $116,000 or so, after purchasing it ten years ago at $107,000. She recently learned that a similar house around the corner with plenty of amenities sold for $106,000. Shortly after, she got a letter from her former city, letting her know that the city was valuing her house at $123,000 for tax purposes, but the deadline for contesting this valuation passed in May. Lessons: the city is not going to get the property taxes they’ve budgeted for once these valuations CAN be contested, and the citizenry is going to be plenty ticked off. (Silver lining, my wife has rented the house and is cash flow neutral on it.)

  6. FrancoisT

    This number has to be wrong. With all the bonuses handed to the banksters and investment dudes and dudetes, we are sure to see a trickle down effect by an increase in pent up demand…no?

    {end of sarcasm}

    1. ndk

      And on the sidebar of the site you linked to, we come full circle:

      “Hire Me!
      Are you looking for financial and legal analysis delivered in plain English? How about a recent law school graduate with a background in the securities and derivatives (both exchange and OTC) industry?”

Comments are closed.