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Global Manpower Employment Outlook Survey Reveals Fourth Quarter Hiring Activity to Soften in 13 of 23 Countries Surveyed

Continued Strong Hiring Ahead in India and the United States, as German Employers Return to Pessimism

Sep 13, 2005

The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey released today found that the majority of employers in 20 of 23 countries and territories surveyed expect to add staff during the fourth quarter of 2005, however, the outlook is decidedly less optimistic across the globe than it was three months ago. German employers reversed their positive third quarter hiring expectations with a negative outlook for the final quarter. Meanwhile, employers in India are again reporting the most optimistic expectations in the survey. Employers in the U.S., Canada and New Zealand expect strong, stable hiring activity to continue for the remainder of the year. The quarterly report from Manpower Inc. (NYSE: MAN) is the most extensive, forward-looking employment survey in the world, gathering data from more than 45,000 employers across the globe each quarter.

A quarterly comparison of adjusted data shows softer hiring activity can be expected in 13 of 23 countries from October through December. Compared to fourth quarter of 2004, labor markets are expected to improve in only eight of 23 countries. Employers in five countries reported identical hiring outlooks compared to last year at this time.

"In Germany, employers' newfound optimism of last quarter has faded and the employment picture is now similar to one year ago," said Jeffrey A. Joerres, chairman and CEO of Manpower Inc. "The impending election has most likely created uncertainty and a reluctance to hire among businesses, which is typical in a run-up to a major election. One thing is for certain, regardless of who is elected, further labor market reform will be required to fuel Germany's future job creation. In contrast, the Indian labor market continues to be red hot, with continued robust hiring in the Services sector."

*** Please note that the fourth quarter survey data was collected prior to Hurricane Katrina. Manpower is prepared to discuss how the hurricane has thus far changed the U.S. employment landscape in the areas where we do business and how we have responded to those changes in our job placement and recruitment efforts. ***

In the Asia Pacific region, only employers in India and Singapore reported an improved outlook from the third quarter. The Japanese employment outlook remains consistent from third to fourth quarter, which is an improvement over fourth quarter expectations a year ago. The least optimistic hiring outlook in the region was reported in China, down slightly from third quarter.

"Japanese job seekers should see a labor market that continues to recover at a measured pace. However, the hiring outlook in Hong Kong is considerably weaker compared to one year ago, with the greatest declines reported in the Finance/Insurance/Real Estate and Wholesale & Retail Trade sectors," said Joerres.

In Europe, employers in seven of 12 countries expect the seasonal slowdown in hiring that typically occurs on the continent in the fourth quarter. Employment prospects are strongest in Ireland, Norway and Spain, while Italian employers reported a negative outlook along with their German counterparts. Compared to one year ago, the employment picture is consistent in most countries, however, based on seasonally adjusted data, hiring expectations are notably weaker in the UK.

"Job seekers in the UK will most likely find fewer job opportunities toward the end of the year, as employers are reporting their weakest fourth quarter outlook since 1994," said Joerres. "Employment prospects are expected to be weaker from one year ago in all industry sectors, especially in the South East. Employers in the Transport/Storage/Communication and Hotels & Retail sectors are reporting their least optimistic 4Q hiring intentions on record."

In the Americas, the labor markets continue to be strong, following the same stable hiring patterns seen throughout the year. Employers in the U.S. and Canada are most optimistic about hiring, while Mexican employers also expect a solid hiring pace in the next three months.

"Fourth quarter hiring expectations among Canadian employers are the strongest they have been in five years, based on seasonally adjusted data, bolstered by robust hiring intentions in the Mining and Construction sectors," said Joerres. "These same sectors are also reporting the strongest hiring plans in the U.S., where the labor market continues to be remarkably stable. Service sector employers in the U.S. also say they will be hiring more compared to last quarter and last year at this time."

The next Manpower Employment Outlook Survey will be released on the 13th of December 2005 to report hiring expectations for the first quarter of 2006.

The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey is available free of charge to the public through their local Manpower representative in participating countries. To receive e-mail notification when the survey is available each quarter, interested individuals are invited to complete an online subscription form at .

About the Survey

The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey is conducted quarterly to measure employers' intentions to increase or decrease the number of employees in their workforce during the next quarter. It is the only forward-looking survey of its kind, unparalleled in its size, scope, longevity and area of focus. The Survey has been running for more than 40 years and is one of the most trusted surveys of employment activity in the world. The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey is based on interviews with more than 45,000 public and private employers worldwide and is considered a highly respected economic indicator.

The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey is currently available for 23 countries and territories: Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Norway, Singapore, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, the United Kingdom and the United States. The program began in the United States and Canada in 1962, and the United Kingdom was added in 1966. Mexico and Ireland launched the survey in 2002, and 13 additional countries were added to the program in 2003. New Zealand joined the program in 2004 and China, India, Switzerland and Taiwan were added in 2005. For more information, visit the Manpower Inc. Web site at and enter the Press Room.

About Manpower

Manpower Inc. (NYSE: MAN) is a world leader in the employment services industry, offering customers a continuum of services to meet their needs throughout the employment and business cycle. The company specializes in permanent, temporary and contract recruitment; employee assessment; training; career transition; organizational consulting services; and professional financial services. Manpower's worldwide network of 4,300 offices in 68 countries and territories enables the company to meet the needs of its 400,000 customers per year, including small and medium size enterprises in all industry sectors, as well as the world's largest multinational corporations. The focus of Manpower's work is on raising productivity through improved quality, efficiency and cost-reduction, enabling customers to concentrate on their core business activities. In addition to the Manpower brand, the company operates under the brand names of Right Management Consultants, Jefferson Wells, Elan and Brook Street. More information on Manpower Inc. is available at .

NOTE TO EDITORS: Full survey results for each of the 23 countries and
territories included in this quarter's survey, plus regional and global
comparisons, can be found in the Manpower Press Room at . In addition, all tables and graphs from the
full report are available to be downloaded for use in publication or broadcast
from the Manpower Online Visual Library, also located in the Press Room on .

SOURCE: Manpower Inc.

CONTACT: Bruce Bock of Manpower Inc., +1-414-906-6193

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