For those who thought that India is impervious to the economic crisis in the US and Europe, here is an eye opener. Indian economy is feeling the tremors of global disturbances, as reflected in a pessimistic employment outlook. As the economic majors notably the US and Europe reel under debt crisis and demand slowdown, jobs are the obvious casualties. As per the Manpower quarterly hiring survey, the US index has declined sequentially for the first time in nine quarters, suggesting that the unemployment rate is likely to go higher. The ripple effect is hard to miss. The hiring outlook back home too has fallen sequentially. As US is pumping in billions of dollars to stimulate job growth, India too seems to be in a need for a jobs boost.
But that should not surprise us. IT services, that comprise majority of the employers, is expected to be a little slack in hiring this time as global slowdown will have an adverse impact on the industry. The manufacturing sector too could become a casualty on account of rising input costs and interest rates. Besides this, the export sector is one of the key areas where job opportunities exist. This includes small and medium enterprises that derive major chunk of revenues from exports. Given that Western economies are struggling and interest rates are increasing, the export boom is bound to deflate, dragging with it the employment opportunities.
The middle class, already overburdened with ambitious growth plans, seems to be unable to boost the employer's confidence in the wake of the US and European slowdown. Looking at the positive side, while the current employment prospects have become gloomier versus three months back in India, the country is also among the strongest in 41 countries and territories where the survey was conducted. As global markets remain uncertain, one will have to wait and see if hiring levels go back to what they were in the past.