Norwegian companies more optimistic than in six years

Statoil Oil Rig Climate GasOil Rig. Photo: Pixabay

Norwegian employers expect the largest staffing boost for over six years.Companies in the southwest look the most brightly on the prospects, while optimism fell sharply in Oslo.


This was shown by ManpowerGroup’s labour market barometer for the third quarter, which will be presented on Tuesday.

Among the employers in the survey, 15% plan to staff up. 80% plan to maintain the workforce as it is, while 5% are planning to cut down.

The employment plans have shown stable growth and are now 3% higher than at the same time last year.

In the barometer, 751 Norwegian companies are asked if they need to staff up,staff down or whether the staffing need is unchanged in the coming quarter.

The so-called seasonally adjusted net count will end this time at plus 9%.It is the highest optimism measured in the labour market in six years.

The net number is the percentage of businesses that say they are going to staff up, less the percentage of companies that say they are going to staff down. The error margin does not exceed plus / minus 3.6%.

Most positive in the southwest

The oil crisis that hit Norway in the autumn of 2014 became heavy for many companies in southern and western Norway. But the trend has long been reversed, both in this region and in the rest of the country. Growth in the economy is increasing, unemployment is falling and companies will again employ more staff.

South and West Norway now have the country’s most optimistic employers for the third quarter, according to Manpower’s barometer. There are net staffing prospects of plus 15%,the strongest from the region for over nine years.

This is an improvement of 12 and 11% respectively, compared with the previous quarter and third quarter last year.

Oslo falls – challenges in the north

The employers in the Oslo area are more cautious before the third quarter. They report net staffing outlook at plus 2%, 8% weaker than the previous quarter, and 2% weaker than at the same time last year.

“The outlook for the Oslo area is the weakest we have seen since the end of 2016, and it is also a sharp decline compared with the previous quarter. Whether this is the start of a trend is too early to say,’’ said ManpowerGroup CEO, Maalfrid Brath, to NTB news.

Also in northern Norway, the demand for labour is high, but several regional reports show that employers find it difficult to obtain people with the right skills and personal qualities.

Finance and Insurance

In terms of industries, optimism is greatest in finance, with a net staffing outlook of plus 13%.

“Developments in both regulations and fine-tech have created an enormous need for digital skills in banking and finance. These have been a key factor in the staffing we have seen in this industry in the past quarters,” said Brath.

Fin-tech is a collective term for new technology and design that challenges traditional financial services for loans, payments, finance and trade.

Closest following finance, the sectors for energy received plus 12%, the public sector got plus 11%,and oil and gas plus 9%.


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