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JOBS: ManpowerGroup says Milwaukee is one of the cities with the strongest job prospects

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MILWAUKEE (WITI) — The latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey, released Tuesday, December 9th by ManpowerGroup, demonstrates a continuation of U.S. employers’ growing optimism about the labor market. The result is a seasonally adjusted Net Employment Outlook of +16% for the first quarter of 2015, a level last reported seven years ago in Q1 2008 when the Outlook was also +16%. The Outlook is relatively stable compared to Q4 2014 and slightly improved from one year ago at this time.

Globally, staffing levels are expected to grow by varying margins in all but four countries, but there is little evidence of a broad-based acceleration of hiring activity. In addition to the U.S., employer confidence in the U.K. also keeps up its gradual improvement. Hiring intentions in China and Brazil remain positive, but the energetic pace that once characterized both labor markets continues to slow to more modest levels. Meanwhile, hiring in Ireland and Spain is expected to regain momentum as Outlooks again turn positive following the dips into negative territory three months ago.

U.S. Results Summary

Of the more than 18,000 U.S. employers surveyed, 19 percent anticipate an increase in staff levels during Q1 2015, while 6 percent expect to reduce workforce levels. Seventy-three percent of employers report no change in their hiring plans, and the final 2 percent of employers are undecided about their hiring intentions. When seasonal variations are removed from the data, the U.S. Net Employment Outlook is +16%.


Increase Staff Levels

Decrease Staff Levels

Maintain Staff Levels

Don’t Know

Net Employment Outlook


Q1 2015







Q4 2014

(previous quarter)






Q1 2014

(one year ago)






“As overall demand improves, we continue to see consistent, gradual strengthening in U.S. employers’ hiring plans,” said ManpowerGroup CEO Jonas Prising. “There’s a little wind at our backs, as evidenced by the broadly positive hiring plans, and we see that as boding well for 2015.”

U.S. Hiring Plans by Regions, Industry Sectors and States/Metro Areas

The first quarter research shows a slight increase in U.S. employers’ quarter-over-quarter hiring intentions across all regions, and a moderate increase in the Midwest and West compared to one year ago at this time.

Employers have a positive Outlook in all 13 industry sectors included in the survey, with Leisure & Hospitality, Wholesale & Retail Trade, Transportation & Utilities and Professional & Business Services employers reporting the strongest hiring intentions.

Employers in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico have positive hiring Outlooks. Those in Hawaii, North Dakota, Delaware, Michigan and Texas indicate the strongest Net Employment Outlooks, while New Jersey, Alaska, New Hampshire and Rhode Island employers project the weakest Outlooks.

Among employers in the 100 largest metropolitan statistical areas, the strongest job prospects are expected in:

  • Cape Coral, Fla.
  • McAllen, Texas
  • Deltona, Fla.
  • Grand Rapids, Mich.
  • Milwaukee, Wis.
  • Oxnard, Calif.

The weakest Outlooks are projected in:

  • Spokane, Wash.
  • Portland, Ore.
  • Syracuse, N.Y.
  • Rochester, N.Y.
  • Indianapolis, Ind.

Global Results Summary

  • More than 65,000 employers across 42 countries and territories were interviewed to anticipate global labor market activity. Around the globe, employers in 38 of the 42 countries and territories report positive first-quarter hiring plans. This compares with 36 of 42 in Q4 2014.
  • Hiring intentions strengthen in 22 of 42 countries and territories when compared with Q4 2014, but decline in 12. When compared year-over-year, hiring intentions strengthen in 24 countries and territories but decline in 13.
  • Hiring confidence for the first three months of the new year is strongest among employers in India, Taiwan, New Zealand, Japan, Turkey and Panama while the weakest and only negative outlooks are reported in Finland, Italy,Netherlands and Switzerland.

“Employers are acutely aware that the economic situation could change on short notice due to unfolding geopolitical events or a slowdown in Europe, and that is contributing to moderate global jobs growth and a continuation of the patterns we’ve seen in prior quarters,” added Prising. “It remains a very slow and uneven labor market recovery globally, and employers are reacting to an uncertain environment with a degree of caution.”

The next Manpower Employment Outlook Survey will be released on March 10, 2015, to report hiring expectations for Quarter 2 2015.