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Employer hiring plans slow in Q2

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The pace of hiring in the finance, insurance and real estate sector is expected to slow in the second quarter, according to an employment outlook survey by workforce group Manpower.

The survey shows 12% of employers in the sector intend to increase hiring in the quarter, 83% expect to make no change and 4% flag a decrease.

The resulting net employment outlook score of 7% is down four percentage points from the first quarter and is six points lower than the corresponding period last year.

It is the weakest level since the 2009 third quarter.

Manpower says the outlook is still cautiously optimistic, despite digital disruption and a candidate shortage.

Neil McDonald, a director at Manpower Group company Marks Sattin, says there is a shift from permanent recruitment to part-time and project-based roles in the finance industry.

“The reason for this is three-fold: broader economic uncertainty, large transformation projects and a lack of skilled candidates in this field,” he said.

“The trend will likely continue in the short-medium term.”

Services has a net employment outlook of 15%, the strongest by sector, followed in equal second place by transport and utilities, and mining and construction.

Wholesale and retail trade has the lowest score, at 5%.

The national survey asked 1511 employers how they anticipate total employment to change in the three months to the end of June, compared with the current quarter.