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France – Half a million agency workers employed in Q4

21 March 2013

The temporary staffing market in France continued to decline in the final quarter of 2012, new statistics from the French ministry of labour show today. The number of temporary agency workers fell to 507,700 in the quarter, a decline of -10.8% from a year ago.

But the ministry said the decline in the staffing market eased in the three months to December, when compared to previous quarters. In the second and third quarter of 2012, the number of agency workers fell by a quarterly -3.4% and -5.3%. In the fourth quarter, this decrease was lower at -1.9% with 9,600 jobs shed from the previous three months.

The figures also reveal that the number contracts signed in the period declined by -5.5% year-on-year.

Sharp falls in jobs were noted in the industrial sector where 214,300 temporary workers were employed in the quarter, a decline of -16% from a year earlier. Other industries were not immune to the decline with the construction industry seeing the number of agency workers dropping by an annual -7.9% to 111,300.

In the sales and services sector (tertiary sector), this figure was down -5.7% to 179,600 while in the agricultural industry, there were 2,600 agency workers employed in the quarter, a reduction of -2.6% from a year ago.

Staffing Industry Analysts does not expect the French staffing market to return to growth this year as weaker economic conditions and a decline in the auto and manufacturing industry continue to impact recruitment activities in the sector.

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