April 2, 2009 / 4:09 AM / 10 years ago

More U.S. workers worried about layoffs: survey

NEW YORK (Reuters) - More U.S. workers are worried about getting laid off from their jobs now than at the end of 2008, according to a survey released on Thursday.

A man looks at a list of employers during the 2009 CUNY Big Apple Job Fair at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in New York, March 20, 2009. REUTERS/Shannon Stapleton

The quarterly survey conducted for Glassdoor.com, an online career site that posts salaries and workplace reviews, found 26 percent of those polled now fear being laid off in the next six months.

At the end of last year, in a comparable survey, 21 percent feared being laid off, it said.

Asked about their current outlook for their companies in the next six months, 35 percent think it will improve, 51 percent said it would stay the same and 14 percent think it will worsen. The survey did not ask a comparable question at the end of 2008.

The latest survey was taken March 19-23, and the previous survey was taken December 6-18.

The most optimistic workers were aged 45 to 54, 42 percent of whom think their company’s outlook will improve in the next six months.

The most pessimistic were over 55 years old, 18 percent of whom said they think their company’s outlook will grow worse.

A growing number of workers say they are willing to accept a salary cut or forfeit vacation time to keep their jobs.

Forty percent now say they would take a cut in pay, compared with 30 percent at the end of 2008, while 30 percent now say they would forfeit time off, compared with 24 percent at the end of last year, the survey found.

Despite the economic crisis, 36 percent of workers say they expect a raise in the next year, the survey found.

Most likely to expect a pay hike were those earning more than $75,000 a year, 44 percent of whom expect a boost, it said. Least likely to expect a raise were those making less than $35,000; 49 percent of whom do not expect one, it said.

The nationwide online surveys were conducted for Glassdoor.com by Harris Interactive in March among 2,798 adults, 1,560 of whom were employed full- or part-time, and in December among 2,281 adults, 1,331 of whom were employed full- or part-time.

The data was weighted to represent such factors as region, age, education and income, and no estimates of theoretical sampling errors can be calculated, Harris said.

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