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High-pay Jobs Grow, Mid-market Flat, Pres. Bush Sees Job Creation in Free Trade Pacts

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13 October 2007: There are three main observations to the job market in October 2007: Six-figure jobs continue to expand, general labor jobs have held flat for the past seven months, and President George W Bush says his free trade agreements with South America and Korea would give a much needed boost to minimum wage jobs. Free trade agreements are pending approval in Congress.

Meanwhile, the Internet's largest online job posting website, Monster.com, reported no real change in online recruitment activity since March, but the September reading was 8 percent up from one year earlier. Healthcare services appear to be the strongest performer based upon jobs posted on monster.com and across other recruitment websites.

Overall, 11 of 20 industries and nine of 23 occupational categories tracked by the Monster Index registered increased online job availability in September.

“With...signs of upward pressure on the unemployment rate and a slowing worker turnover rate, U.S. online recruitment appears to have leveled off somewhat over the past three months,” said Steve Pogorzelski, executive vice president at Monster Worldwide. “While online opportunities for white-collar occupations in general, and the financial sector in particular, eased further in September, the Index has yet to show any dramatic adverse impact on demand for workers in the broader service sector as a result of the sub-prime mortgage fallout.”

Online recruitment activity increased in September for industries in the goods producing sectors, with both construction and manufacturing edging up 3 percent. Industries with the least growth in opportunities included management at companies and enterprises; and finance and insurance, which both dipped 1 percent.

Year-over-year, healthcare support remains the Index’s top growth category, while military specific has registered the steepest decline.

According to data tabulated by executive job search TheLadders.com, hiring activity at the upper end of the job market shows no signs of slowing down. The company’s Quarterly Executive Job Market Trends Report (third quarter 2007,) which tracks hiring patterns in 20 major cities and surveys in-the-trenches job seekers nationwide, found stability across a variety of metrics.

“The $100,000+ job market is simply not slowing down,” said Marc Cenedella, president and CEO of TheLadders.com. “If we use what is happening in the high end market as a measure of things to come, we may soon be seeing an increase in hiring activity across the board.”

Currently on theladders.com, top jobs include sales (20,094,) technology (19,438,) finance (12,222,) and marketing (9,984.) Hot titles include management (58,975,) director (12,099,) and vice president (4,099.)

TheLadders.com found the hottest $100,000+ job markets to be New York, San Francisco, Boston, Seattle, and Chicago. New York remains the land of opportunity among job seekers; it currently attracts the highest number of job-seekers from other parts of the country. The prospects for job seekers are also strong in New York with the ratio of job-seekers to job postings currently sitting at an attractive 3:1. Among the firms doing the most high-end hiring in the region are JPMorgan Chase, The McGraw-Hill Companies, and General Electric.

Elsewhere in the United States, the ratio of job seekers to available jobs is even stronger. Cities currently boasting a 2:1 ratio of job seekers to open positions are San Francisco, Washington D.C., and San Diego. Companies doing the most high-end hiring in these markets include: Google, Fannie Mae, and Qualcomm.

Tampa and Detroit are among the tightest markets. Neither is currently drawing much attention from out-of-state job searches and there is stiff competition for every available opening.

Sentiment about the stability of the high-end job market was particularly strong among active job seekers. A 57 percent majority described the high-end job markets in their cities as either “stable” or “somewhat stable.” An additional 15 percent described their local job markets as “very stable (and growing.)” More than half of respondents said that now is a better time than one year ago to be looking for a new job, and a 67 percent majority expect their job searches to take less than six months.

Although the majority of job-seekers cited the stability of the high-end job markets in their cities, many believe that they would be better able to reach their career goals elsewhere. The city receiving the most votes as the best place for job seekers was New York. And, judging by the survey results, many executives would be willing to relocate for a shot at a great job offer; 74 percent of respondents said they’d leave their current cities for an out-of-town assignment.

President George W Bush meanwhile is campaigning for Congress to step-up support for his free trade proposals with Peru, Colombia, Panama, and South Korea, citing these agreements would boost minimum wage jobs. In the past three years the dollar has declined double-digits against currencies in those countries and thus, products from the United States would be cheaper than ever before.

"These agreements will level the playing field for workers, farmers, and businesses here in America," the president said.

The White House claims that exports --under existing free trade agreements-- have risen 13 percent to Central America and the Dominican Republic. "Taken together, these deals will expand American access to 75 million new consumers, with a combined gross domestic product of $245 billion from Peru, Colombia, and Panama," the president said.



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