July 5, 2006

US workers more pessimistic about finances, survey finds

NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. workers are more pessimistic
about their personal finances, a trend that began about three
months ago, a monthly employment survey reported on Wednesday.

The survey, by staffing company Hudson Highland Group Inc.,
found that 43 percent of workers believe their financial
situation is getting worse, up 4 points since March, while 18
percent describe their finances as poor, a 3-point increase
since March.

Hudson, which surveys about 9,000 U.S. workers, said
pessimism has grown for three consecutive months, citing a
softening of the U.S. economy, driven in part by high energy

It said large employers have more options to help workers
by providing options like carpools and mileage reimbursement.
As a result, confidence among workers at bigger companies is

"Larger organizations are less likely to be affected by the
current softening," Steve Wolfe, executive vice president of
Hudson, North America, said in a statement.

A broader measure of labor conditions rose in June. The
Hudson Employment Index was up one-tenth of a point to a
reading of 102.4. But that is below levels the index reached in
the first four months of 2006, and below its level of a year