CT Employers Less Optimistic About Hiring in First Quarter

Employers nationwide are slightly more optimistic about hiring in the first quarter of 2017 than employers in Connecticut, according to the ManpowerGroup Employment Outlook Survey, although both expect to hire at a favorable pace during the first quarter of 2017. From January to March, 17 percent of Connecticut companies interviewed plan to hire more employees, while 7 percent expect to reduce their payrolls. Another 73 percent expect to maintain their current workforce levels and 3 percent are not certain of their hiring plans. This yields a Net Employment Outlook* of 10 percent.

For the coming quarter, job prospects appear best in Durable Goods Manufacturing, Nondurable Goods Manufacturing, Transportation & Utilities, Wholesale & Retail Trade, Financial Activities, Professional & Business Services, Education & Health Services, Leisure & Hospitality and Government. Employers in Construction, Information and Other Services plan to reduce staffing levels.

“Hiring intentions are weaker compared to Q4 2016 when the Net Employment Outlook was 12%,” said ManpowerGroup spokesperson Betty Gooding said about the Connecticut outlook. “The hiring pace is expected to pick up compared to one year ago when the Net Employment Outlook was 8%.” Of the more than 11,000 employers surveyed in the United States, 19 percent expect to add to their workforces, and 6 percent expect a decline in their payrolls during Quarter 1 2017. Seventy-three percent of employers anticipate making no change to staff levels, and the remaining 2 percent of employers are undecided about their hiring plans.

When seasonal variations are removed from the data, the Net Employment Outlook is +16 percent, a slight decrease compared to the Quarter 4 2016 Outlook, +18 percent.  That’s a somewhat more optimistic view than employers in Connecticut, the survey found.