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Unemployment Could Exceed 10%: Staffing Company CEO

Thursday, 6 Aug 2009 | 12:46 PM ET

Although the U.S. economy is losing jobs at a slower rate, unemployment could still exceed 10 percent, said Tig Gilliam, CEO of staffing company Adecco North America.

Who's Hiring?
Tig Gilliam, CEO of staffing company Adecco North America, tells CNBC who's hiring.

(See the accompanying video for the complete interview.)

“We’re not passed the large announced layoff process even in this cycle,” he told CNBC. “We’re still going to see unemployment increase ten or twenty basis points, and this is going to take place over the course of the rest of the year.”

The number of U.S. workers filing new jobless claims dropped more-than-expected last week, according to government data released on Thursday. (For more on the employment report, see story below.)

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Jobless Claims Fall More Than Expected

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While the news is a positive sign for the economy, said Gilliam, unemployment will remain a concern. Some Americans are on furloughs and 9 million are working part-time for economic reasons, he said. The economy could add net jobs by the end of the year, though companies would be slower to hire than in previous recessions.

“We see a lot of our clients now talking about: ‘Boy, these cycles are greater than we expected. We really need to plan on a much higher level of flexibility as we come back in this time,” he said.

While people whose jobless insurance is running out consider higher education and volunteer work, the unemployed can also look towards small business.

“Unless an individual company is in the position that they’re seeing their business picking up, they’re very cautious in adding back,” he said.

More Employment and Economic News on CNBC.com:

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