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Business more optimistic, but still not hiring

Unemployment Insurance

Businesses expect their companies to perform better this year but that optimism still isn't translating into a push to hire more workers, according to a new survey from the National Association for Business Economics.

Of the 64 members who responded to NABE's January survey, most said they saw stronger sales in the final months of 2013, and 43 percent expect their companies to modestly hike selling prices this year. That's the highest percentage in more than 12 months. Most respondents don't expect the new health care law or the Federal Reserve's easing of its stimulus policies to have a major impact on business, either. However only 37 percent expect to create jobs in the next six months, the same as in NABE's October survey.

For the fourth quarter, only about a quarter of respondents said their companies expanded payrolls. Those most likely to report increased hiring were from the manufacturing, finance, insurance and real estate sectors.

The U.S. unemployment rate fell to 6.7 percent in December, its lowest point in more than five years. But that wasn't because people found jobs. Rather, they stopped looking for work altogether, making them no longer counted as unemployed.

About 70 percent of those who responded to NABE's survey predict that the economy will grow between 2.1 and 3 percent this year. That too is little changed from October, but it is more optimistic than the 2.3 percent growth forecast by the Fed. On Thursday, the Conference Board reported that its index of leading indicators rose modestly in December, suggesting that growth will remain steady early this year.

The survey results "suggest that economic growth accelerated to a moderate pace during the fourth quarter of 2013 from its modest pace the previous quarter," said NABE President Jack Kleinhenz, principal and chief economist at Kleinhenz and Associates in Cleveland, in a statement.

The survey, released Monday, analyzed responses given between Dec. 19 and Jan. 6 from members with companies employing anywhere from 1 to more than 1,000 workers.


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John January 27 2014 at 9:55 PM

If ur unemployed and want a job get it together and do something! Every unemployed person from all across the country needs to get up off the couch and block the main downtown intersection of every town on Labor Day. Add in those who had a decent job but now are under employed at some dead end part time crappy job as well. I say we all meet at noon and stay there until 4PM and NO cars go through! We would get national coverage and the truth would be out as I figure it would be the largest march in American history! Call everyone you know in this situation. Put signs at the unemployment office. DO something now!

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moaber January 27 2014 at 6:58 PM

What is shocking is that the American voter couldnt see this coming 6 years ago.

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piz21 January 27 2014 at 6:45 PM

unemployment isn't down, the number of cases they're paying out is down because they expired . this administration has been spinning this lie since day one and now they're crying because not enough hard working people are signing up for obamacare to pay for all the 10th generation welfare recipients. boo hoo, i can't wait for this term to be over, i just pray we can repeal the communist health care act, and that all the retarded, smug libs move to the home of their leader/hero in some muslim s. african country.

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DAVE January 27 2014 at 6:36 PM

I was a Mechanical Designer spent 2 years looking for a jb after being laied off in 06. Saved companies I worked for millions of dollars. Sometimes in just one year. What offers did I recieve one from China and one from India.

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horsebackridngrl January 27 2014 at 6:22 PM

How about keeping an eye on all the red states and all the blue states and figure out whos way is best at creating jobs. I think we all know which side to follow . then put all of this political correct stuff aside and fix the darn economy. nice guys finish last. and celebrities don't pay your bills.

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horsebackridngrl January 27 2014 at 6:09 PM

The crack head mayor in Toronto could do a better job than this president. At least he can tell the truth when he messes up.

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1 reply to horsebackridngrl's comment
dbtrading January 27 2014 at 6:38 PM

I fully agree with you.

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Hello Sean ;) January 27 2014 at 5:38 PM

How does the government know people have stopped looking for work? All they know is that people have exhausted their benefits. The unemployment rate, the REAL rate is actually 32.7% if calculated by pre-Obama calculations.

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2 replies to Hello Sean ;)'s comment
roj3usa January 27 2014 at 6:12 PM

The "labor force participation rate" indicates the percentage of Americans AT work is at a 35 year low.
People have quit looking,

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tamsen86 January 28 2014 at 2:07 AM

The government issues food stamps, welfare, and SSI. Those are a big clue.

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darrthom January 27 2014 at 4:20 PM

I have frequently read that some companies are unable to find qualified workers. I just today read about ten companies across the spectrum who have several thousand job openings. I remember several years back when a good friend of mine, president of a very large construction firm, told me about trying to hire laborers. His construction superintendants were often told by interviewed folks that the difference between the pay offered and what they received in unemployed benefits was too little for them to go to work.

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Iselin007 January 27 2014 at 4:07 PM

Things are so bad now crime is rising. The hoodlums don't ask which party you belong to before they car jack you or worse. Soon when they realize the middle class are broke they'll move on to estate sections and luxury malls. With out direction and purpose once afforded by manufacturing skills and training with a decent check at the end of the week the generations will continue to move in the wrong direction.

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Iselin007 January 27 2014 at 3:55 PM

Hows this the ones responsible should be banned from holding public office?

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