28 Apr 2009

Job prospect worries up sharply - survey

6:38 pm on 28 April 2009

Almost two-thirds of New Zealanders have doubts about their employment prospects, according to figures just out.

The latest Nielsen consumer confidence and sentiment survey shows that 71% of respondents believed local employment prospects for the next 12 months were not so good or bad.

That compares with 38% who expressed the same sentiments six months ago.

Nielsen's latest consumer confidence index has dropped by nine points to 90, during the same period, although New Zealand's level of confidence is still ahead of many other countries - it ranks ninth out of 50 countries.

The economy is New Zealanders' second-biggest concern, followed by debt.

But just 38% said they were using any spare cash to pay off liabilities, while 47% were adding it to their savings accounts.

Wendy Hewson, from recruitment agency Kelly Services, says job applicants are becoming more willing to compromise, reflecting growing doubts about employment prospects.

Ms Hewson says applicants are more willing to accept relocations or commute longer distances to work. She says expectations of salary packages are also dropping.