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Southport Reporter®

Edition No. 219

Date:- 18 September 2005

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AS UK unemployment figures released today show an increase in the number of people out of work, UK employers are showing signs of caution in their hiring intentions leading up to the end of the year, according to the latest Manpower Employment Outlook Survey. The results from the quarterly survey of employer hiring intentions show that, whilst employers still intend to keep hiring, employer confidence is waning.

The Manpower survey results show that employers are the least confident about their hiring intentions than at any time since Q1 2002. Weakening results from a number of business sectors including Finance & Business (+11%); Hotel & Retail (+7%); Transport & Communications (+6%); Community & Social (+6%) have contributed to an overall Net Employment Outlook of +8%. When seasonal variations are removed from the data, the Outlook is +5%.

For the second quarter in a row, employers in the Construction industry are the most optimistic about their hiring intentions of all employers surveyed, recording a Net Employment Outlook of +13%. This represents a 2 percentage point increase year-on-year.

Commenting on the results, Mark Cahill, managing director at Manpower, says:- "There is an air of growing caution as we enter the last quarter of the year. The good news is that many employers look set to keep on hiring, albeit at a slower rate, but are taking their time before committing to expanding their workforce. 73% of employers expect to keep their headcount the same over the coming 3 months."

There is no sign of the significant uplift in jobs on the high street typical for the end of year. Retailers are reporting an Outlook of +1% - an increase of 7 percentage points over the last quarter. Mark Cahill comments:- "The high street is having a tough time. Given the reported lack of consumer confidence it should come as no surprise that the typical end of year recruitment uplift in preparation for the Christmas season is muted. For many retailers, this season looks as if it will be short of festive cheer."

The report shows other business sectors are also showing caution, the Finance & Business services sector is reporting its lowest end of year hiring intentions for a decade. Employers in the Transport & Communications and the Community & Social sectors are also hiring with caution.

Employers in the South of England are also cautious with the South East, the South West and London below the UK average. The London job market has declined markedly by ten percentage points over the quarter.

Continues Mark Cahill:- "The job market in London is challenging at the moment. After an uplift in the summer, employers are expressing growing caution for the remainder of the year. A decline in the Finance and Business services sector can often impact the capital.

However, while employers may be more cautious about hiring people, the job market is still healthy enough that employees are happy to move around and employers are willing to replace them. Good candidates are always in demand so it's as important as ever for employers to regularly review their recruitment and retention strategies to identify and hold onto the best talent."

Across the UK, 8 of the 9 industry sectors surveyed by Manpower are planning to take on staff next quarter. Employers in Construction at +13% (up 2 percentage points year-on-year) and Finance & Business Services at +11% (down 12 percentage points year-on-year) reported figures above the national average. Employers in the Agriculture sector at -13% (down 5 percentage points year-on-year) are the least optimistic and the only ones to expect cutbacks.

Across the UK, employers in 11 of the 12 regions surveyed intend to take on more staff in the quarter ahead. Wales is the most optimistic region, with +20% of employers looking to expand their workforce, an increase of nine percentage points over the year and representing the region's most positive Outlook since the end of 2004. Employers in Northern Ireland (+16%) and the North East (+16%) are the next most confident. Employers in the West Midlands (-2%); London (0%); the South West (+2%); Yorkshire & Humberside (+1%) and the South East (+5%) are the least optimistic.

The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey is the world's most extensive, forward-looking employment survey. The survey has been running in the UK for 39 years and measures employer hiring intentions for the quarter ahead: October to December 2005. 2,100 employers in the UK were surveyed, and over 45,000 employers in 23 countries and territories globally.

Of the 12 European countries surveyed, employers in all but Germany (-2%) and Italy (-1%) are reporting positive hiring intentions. The strongest hiring intentions in Europe are reported in Ireland (+14%), Norway (+12%) and Spain (+10%), while hiring is expected to be less robust in Austria (0), Switzerland (+3%), Spain (+3%) and The Netherlands (+5%). German employers reversed their positive third quarter hiring expectations with a negative outlook for the final quarter of 2005.

Looking at the results from a global level, employers in 20 of the 23 countries and territories surveyed expect to add staff during the fourth quarter of 2005, although 13 of the 23 countries and territories are reporting weaker employment prospects than 3 months ago. Compared to the fourth quarter of 2004, labour markets are expected to improve in 8 of 23 countries. Employers in India (+40%), New Zealand (+22%), Canada (+20%) and the United States (+20%) reported the strongest hiring expectations.


TERRORISM, the environment and poverty are at the top of the North West's concerns for the world, according to a new MORI poll commissioned by international development charity VSO. 30% of people questioned in the North West said terrorism is among the biggest problems facing the world today, while 25% each said the environment and poverty were among their biggest global concerns.

With one quarter of people in the North West saying that poverty is one of the most important challenges facing the world today, VSO is calling for more people in the North West to consider volunteering their skills to tackle poverty overseas. The charity is urgently recruiting volunteers with management skills to work with national and regional government offices and civil society organisations in some of the world's poorest countries to improve the quality and effectiveness of much-needed services including education and healthcare.

Neera Dhingra, VSO spokesperson says:- "Our survey found that people think volunteering can make a lasting difference to the developing world. This year there's been lots of interest in Africa, in global issues and poverty. It's also Year of the Volunteer, so we hope people in the North West can combine the two and make 2005 a year to remember both politically and personally."

Key findings from the poll include:-

* People living in the North West rate global poverty as one of their top global concerns with 25% saying it is amongst the most important problems facing the world today. Terrorism headed the list on 30% and 25% said the environment worried them most.

* 65% of respondents viewed HIV & AIDS as one of the most important issues specifically in developing and Third World countries, followed by poverty with 61%, famine with 55% and Third World Debt with 49%.

* Writing off Third World debt was suggested by 41% of people in the
North West when asked the best way to solve problems in the developing world. Tackling poorly-managed or inefficient governments headed the list on 44%, with 40% backing efforts to introduce schooling for every child and 41%, fairer trading arrangements.

The charity commissioned the poll to gauge public opinion on development issues in the week of the UN Summit in New York where world leaders will discuss progress towards the internationally agreed Millennium Development Goals.

Adopting the Southport Community

BLACKBURN Diocesan Adoption Agency is getting out into the community to hold an adoption ‘Information Evening’ in Southport as part of their recruitment campaign, seeking adoptive parents for children in need of families. Currently there are an estimated 2500 children in England and Wales, in need of new families and the agency is looking for people willing to consider making a difference to the life of a child available for adoption.

Gwen Laird, Assistant Director of the Adoption Agency said:- “This will be our first Information Evening in the Southport area and we hope to get the message across that adoption could be an option for all types of people from all different communities. We are looking forward to meeting prospective adoptive parents”.

If you have ever considered adoption as a possibility for you and you would like to come along to the information evening being held in Southport, contact our Agency for details about dates & venue or maybe you would simply like some details about adoption in general.

Call:- 01254 57759 or visit:-


TOP English actor Ian Hart is directing a film about binge drinking culture with Liverpool youngsters. The star, known for his role as Professor Quirrel in the Harry Potter film, The Philosopher's Stone, and as John Lennon in the film Backbeat, is now taking time out to direct a film, thought up by young people with the help of a scriptwriter. Cameras are now ready to roll for 'Plastered', the working title for the film, which tells the story of a hedonistic night out, featuring fast action car crashes and sexual dilemmas.

Ian said:- "Young people act on what they identify with, so we're making this film realistic, not some sanitised version of reality that preaches to them."

It is hoped that the film will be finished early next year, to be shown in high profile venues to reach as many young people as possible. Colin McKeown from LA Productions, the company which is making the film said:- "Underage drinking is a growing problem and one which we hope this modern and exciting film will help address."

Liverpool's executive member for culture, Councillor Warren Bradley, said:- "To have directors and producers of the calibre of Ian Hart and Colin McKeown shows that young peoples' issues are really being taken seriously as we build up to Liverpool's European Capital of Culture year in 2008."

The film is part of the It's Not OK! violence awareness campaign, supported by the Liverpool Culture Company's Creative Communities initiative. Already, as part of the project, radio adverts have been made by young offenders and theatre productions put on by school children.


ON Friday 30 September at 12.30, Jo Jones will give a talk about “The Holy Isles” painting by David Young Cameron at the Atkinson Art Gallery, in Southport.

See Roberta Lees for weekend brake offer for 2005.

VISIT Roberta Lee's Web Page to see all about their short weekend breaks for party lads and lasses this Christmas.   Click on to and see what you could do for your Christmas Party.

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