The holiday bonus is back, although workers might find it's not quite the windfall they expect.
According to a new survey from outplacement consulting firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas, 78 percent of businesses will offer a year-end gift or bonus, up from 53 percent who did so last year. It's a reflection of not just profits, but a shrinking talent pool as hiring increases. "The need to keep the talent they already have is undoubtedly a driving factor behind the increased percentage of employers awarding year-end bonuses," said John A. Challenger, chief executive officer, in the news release.
But don't start planning your spending spree just yet. The firm surveyed just 100 human resources professionals, so it's tough to gauge how this trend will play out on a larger scale.
"I can tell you it's not going to be as great as what happened in 2012," said economist Chris Christopher, director of U.S. and global consumer economics for IHS Global Insight. That year, an unusually high number of companies paid out bonuses, largely due to fiscal cliff fears. This year, there's nothing brewing in the economy that's predictive of a big bump, he said.