Job creation across the world is set to slow sharply in the last three months of the year, as companies plan to scale back their hiring plans in response to the stuttering global economy, according to a leading survey of employers.

The Employment Outlook survey, released on Tuesday by ManpowerGroup ( MAN), the global recruiting company, will be unwelcome news for policymakers, who are struggling to bring down stubbornly high unemployment rates.

President Barack Obama last week outlined a $450 billion jobs plan, following an official report that showed the U.S. economy created no new jobs in August, and the jobless rate remains at 9.1%.

The ManpowerGroup report, which questioned 65,500 employers in 41 countries, suggests that while employers in most regions still plan to hire new workers in the fourth quarter, the already-sluggish pace of job growth will drop from the current quarter.

The survey indicates that employers intend to cut the rate of hiring from the third quarter or keep it stable in 32 of the 39 countries for which there are comparable data. Employers in India and Turkey plan to reduce the pace of job-creation the most, but hiring is also expected to slow in a slew of the world's biggest economies, including the U.S., the U.K., France, Italy, China, Canada, Mexico and Australia.

"The spark of optimism seen in the global labor market last quarter did not take hold, as employers in the majority of countries we research are now throttling their hiring needs," said Jeff Joerres, ManpowerGroup chief executive.

"Companies across the world are now more agile and quick to adjust to macro threats and decreased demand in their own businesses, giving employers a hyperactive index finger when it comes to hitting the start/stop button on hiring," oerres added.

ManpowerGroup attributed the fall in Indian companies' hiring plans to weaker U.S. demand, noting that the U.S. accounts for almost 60% of the revenue in the $60 billion Indian information technology industry.

U.S. employers said they planned to slow the pace of hiring for the first time in more than two years. Companies in nearly half the sectors surveyed said they expected a "considerable decrease" in the rate of job growth.

In China, the company said job prospects were likely to decline for the fourth consecutive quarter as employers, especially small businesses, continue to struggle with increasing labor costs.
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