Economic Omens: A Round-Up of Good News

Last Updated Mar 5, 2010 9:53 AM EST

Economic indicators: cause for optimism? With a year and a half of economic gloom come and gone, everyone is anxiously scanning the horizon for signs of recovery. And while the US at least is officially back to growth, the sluggish job market has left us with plenty of cause for concern -- particularly for those just starting out in their careers and fearful of the recession's long-term negative impact.

So when several reports giving cause for optimism hit my inbox in the space of a few days, sharing the good news seemed like a good idea. No one is foolish enough to say we're out of the woods yet, but at least there's some light in the distance.

  • Job site Indeed sees "a stark improvement in the job market over the last few months." Their Industry Employment Trends show that ten of the 12 major industries had more job openings in February than a year ago, and because they track advertised rather than filled positions, this is a more forward-looking indicator than government jobs data. The industries with the greatest year-over-year growth are hospitality (44 percent), retail (35 percent) and real estate (33 percent).
  • The Monster Employment Index also rose by ten points in February, registering employers' return to hiring after the January seasonal lull. The long-term growth rate turned positive as well, with the Index up two percent year-on-year, for the first time since December 2007 suggesting some improvement in the underlying demand for labor. Online job demand rose in all of the 28 major metro markets monitored by the Index and, surprise!, Detroit showed strongest monthly gain.
  • A survey of CEO expectations for 2010 by The Conference Board has found growing optimism that the relatively weak global recovery will be able to be sustained and built upon. The poll of more than 200 CEOs, chairman and company presidents was carried out between October and December last year.
(Image of smile sign by fast eddie 42, CC 2.0)
  • Jessica Stillman On Twitter»

    Jessica lives in London where she works as a freelance writer with interests in green business and tech, management, and marketing.