In January, 2013, 30% of executive search firm recruiters reported that they are planning to increase staff in the next 3 months. This is significantly up from 23.5% in the last quarter of 2012 and indicates the highest level of intended hiring by search firms in the last 3 years. In addition, recruiters also report an expectation of a 20% increase in search assignments this year over last year. This seemingly more positive market tone is also seen in the results of ExecuNet's Recruiter Confidence Index, which improved in January, 2013 to 46%, continuing its upward trend from 36% in December and 32% in November. The 46% mark is just below the 50% level that would signal a much more broad based expansion in the executive employment market.
The top industries where recruiters expect to see the greatest growth in executive hiring are:
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