Finance and Accounting Q3 Employee Confidence Index Decreases for Second Consecutive Quarter

Nov 01, 2012, 10:35 ET from The Mergis Group

BOSTON, Nov. 1, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- The Mergis Group Finance and Accounting Employee Confidence Index, a measure of overall confidence among U.S. finance and accounting workers, decreased this quarter to 50.4. This was a 2.2 point decline over the second quarter of 2012, although 5.3 points higher than this time last year. The Mergis Group survey, conducted online by Harris Interactive® among 183 employed finance and accounting workers, indicates a decline in both macroeconomic and personal confidence.

"Over the past two quarters we have seen a decline in the overall confidence levels of finance and accounting professionals," said Steve McMahan, executive vice president of Randstad US, Professionals. "While the current reading is down from the multi-year high recorded in the first quarter, it is worth noting that confidence levels are still running five points higher than at this time last year. It is also noteworthy that this decline in sentiment is occurring alongside a simultaneous decline in the nation's unemployment rate, suggesting the drop in confidence may be based less on actual economic performance and more on recent negative news coverage of economic conditions abroad, especially in Europe. Furthermore, as the housing market continues towards a path toward normalization and historically low interest rates, many financial lending institutions are looking to ramp up their end-of-year hiring efforts. In the month of September alone, more than 13,000 jobs were added in the financial services sector, with much of the growth in real estate and rental and leasing sub-sectors. It is highly likely that skilled mortgage originators, processors, underwriters, closers and loan modification specialists with advanced regulatory knowledge will likely be in high demand in the final months of 2012."

Q3, 2012 Survey Highlights:

Four-out-of-Ten Finance and Accounting Workers Believe the Economy is Weakening

  • Forty percent of finance and accounting employees believe the economy is getting weaker, an increase of two percentage points from the second quarter of 2012.

Fewer Finance and Accounting Workers Believe More Jobs are Available

  • A mere 15 percent of finance and accounting employees believe more jobs are available, representing a decline of six percentage points from the previous quarter. However, 53 percent believe that fewer jobs are available, representing no change from the previous quarter.

Fewer Workers Confident in Their Ability to Find New Jobs

  • Less than four-out-of-ten (38 percent) workers are confident in their ability to find a new job, a decrease from 42 percent in second quarter 2012. Subsequently, close to one-quarter (24 percent) say they are not confident in their ability to find a new job.

More than One-Quarter Likely to Look for New Job

  • More than one-quarter (26 percent) of finance and accounting workers say they are likely to look for a new job in the next 12 months. However, 58 percent say they are not likely to make a job transition.

The Finance and Accounting Confidence Index supplies insights into employee attitudes and sentiment around the economy, job market, job security, employers and in their ability to find a new job. Together with other economic indicators, employers can use this report to assess the overall health of the finance and accounting industry and their workforce.  To view the latest quarterly trends report, click here.    

Survey Methodology
This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of The Mergis Group from July 10-12, August 14-16 and September 11-13, 2012, among 3,790 adults ages 18 and older, of which 183 are employed in finance and accounting. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated.

About The Mergis Group
The Mergis Group is a leading professional placement firm that specializes in recruiting for positions in finance and accounting, engineering and manufacturing, sales and marketing, legal and human resources. The firm provides recruiting services to Fortune 500 and small and mid-sized companies through its network of 35 offices nationally. The Mergis Group is a now a part of Randstad. For more information, please visit

About Randstad
Randstad is a $22.5 billion global provider of HR services and the second largest staffing organization in the world. From temporary staffing to permanent placement to inhouse, professionals, search & selection, and HR Solutions, Randstad holds top positions around the world and has approximately 28,700 corporate employees working from its nearly 4,700 branches and inhouse locations in 40 countries. Founded in 1960 and headquartered in Diemen, the Netherlands, Randstad Holding nv is listed on the NYSE Euronext Amsterdam.

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SOURCE The Mergis Group