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Most workers still feel secure about their jobs

MOST workers feel their jobs are secure -- despite the economic crisis and record unemployment levels.

Just one in three believe their job is under threat, according to research by an economic think-tank.

The Economic and Social Research Institute (ESRI) found most workers felt their positions were safe -- just a third said their job security had worsened in the last few years.

Private sector workers felt more insecure than public sector employees, with those in the construction sector the most pessimistic.

The current level of insecurity is in stark contrast with the early years of the last decade, when just one in 20 workers felt their jobs were threatened.

The research also shows most workers did not suffer a cut in wages during the recession, with just one in five saying their hourly pay had gone down.

But more than half reported cuts in staff numbers in their workplace in the last two years, with public and private sector employees equally affected.


Most felt the pressure at work had increased in the last two years, up from a third since 2003, when the ESRI last carried out the survey.

"While unemployment and job loss are the most obvious labour market measures of recession, the impact can also extend to those who remain in employment," said the report.

The findings were revealed as a new global study showed Ireland suffered the second-worst hike in unemployment of 30 countries during the global economic crisis.

A new OECD report reveals only Spain experienced a bigger rise in joblessness in the last four years, in what is described as the "worst recession since the 1930s".

The unemployment rate soared by over 8pc here since 2007 compared with the worst increase of more than 12pc in Spain.

It rose most rapidly in Spain, Ireland, Greece and the US during the last four years.

But some countries actually enjoyed a reduction in the rate, including Austria and Germany.

OECD official Alain De Serres said the main reason for the rapid rise in Ireland's unemployment rate was the bursting of the construction bubble.

"In 2007, construction employment accounted for 13pc of overall employment but this has fallen to 6pc or 7pc," Mr De Serres said.

"I suspect that the ease with which credit was made available to developers fed the bubble, which was an illusion," he added.

Irish Independent