More bosses expect to hire than fire

More bosses expect to hire workers than fire workers in 2013, a survey of senior executives indicates.

A study by Merc Partners found that 58% of senior executives are positive about the economy with nearly 40% of respondents claiming that their firms will employ more people next year.

The survey found that although senior executives were in genera positive about the outlook for the Irish economy, there were a number issues that needed to be addressed.

“While most executives are positive about our economic prospects, this optimism is qualified with concerns about a small number of critical issues, including stimulating growth in the economy, promoting job creation, the pace of public sector reform and copper- fastening a deal which reduces the cost of the banking bailout,” Kieran Duff, a partner with Merc, said.

The senior executives surveyed overwhelmingly favoured a higher level of cuts to the budget, instead of tax increases. Some 61% of senior executives favoured a ratio of cuts to tax increases of 4:1 or twice as high as the Government’s proposed ratio of 2:1 in favour of spending cuts.

The executives surveyed said job creation could be stimulated by cutting business costs. They called for cuts to PRSI rates and corporate taxation as a priority to create jobs.

Another survey, the InterTradeIreland Business Monitor for November indicates that more than half of Irish businesses are winding down, surviving or contracting, with the depressed market becoming the norm.

Director of strategy and policy for InterTradeIreland, Aidan Gough, said: “The consistency of the results means that the current situation is now regarded as an economic norm for most businesses.”

The InterTradeIreland Business Monitor found that the recession is beginning to hit larger firms which is having a negative effect on the employment market: “In this report, it is clear that mid-sized businesses are now starting to feel the impact of the recession more deeply with a 25% decline in sales for Q2 and a 33% decline in Q3 2012.

“On the employment front, while almost 80% of businesses across the island have maintained staffing levels over the last three months, fewer companies report to be hiring than in the previous quarter.”

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