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The University of Michigan’s Conference Board reported this week that its measure of consumer confidence slipped slightly from the previous month, but remained near a 15-month high. The study also indicated that, for the first time in more than a year, more consumers said the economy had improved rather than worsened. The report caught my attention because it reinforced what we have observed on the recruiting front. Hiring activity has remained active across the board, implying that confidence among decision makers remains strong. Every sector is active, and, of particular interest, is the launch of searches this quarter for transactional professionals (acquisitions, development and leasing), signaling continued expansion in ’07. Activity is not only strong at the senior ranks but, as indicated by job postings over the past six months, the appetite for mid-level talent is also robust. Notwithstanding this apparently strong hiring trend, most executives are “cautiously” optimistic, so it will be interesting to see how this plays out as we enter the New Year.

Tony LoPinto is CEO of Equinox Partners, an executive search firm specializing in the real estate industry, and parent company of SelectLeaders. The views expressed in this article are the author’s own.

Job Opportunities
HARSCH INVESTMENTS (LAS VEGAS) Senior Vice President The person hired will supervise all areas related to operations, leasing, development and marketing. The candidate should have a minimum of 10 years experience in property management and leasing of commercial real estate (industrial and office), acquisition and development of commercial properties, supervision and management of staff.

JBM REALTY ADVISORS (TAMPA, FL) Marketing Director The position will work with a marketing director and graphic designer to create materials for large institutional purchasers, wealthy individuals and other investors. Experience in real estate industry or real estate-related degree is preferred.

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