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The challenging employment environment continued in Belgium, as the latest statistics from the Belgium federation of staffing agencies (Federgon) reported a drop in the number of hours worked by temporary employees in July.
Compared with a year ago, the number of hours worked by temporary workers fell by -4.6%. Blue collar workers experienced a stronger decline in hours falling by -5.9%, year-on-year. White collar workers fared slightly better but still recorded a -2.9% drop in hours worked from last year.
The number of hours worked by students, traditionally accounting for a third of temporary employment activity, experienced the sharpest fall with -6.5% compared with a year ago.
Hours worked in July 2013 were also below those worked in June 2013, down -1.1%. This fall has been attributed to declines in blue collar and white collar billings, down -0.97% and -1.25% respectively.
The Federgon index reached 197.8 points in July, down from 199.9 points in June 2013. The index was set at a base of 100 in January 1995 and reflects the levels of activity in the temporary staffing market in Belgium.