Accounting and finance workers grew more optimistic about the employment market in May, due to a rise in anticipated hiring activity by their companies, staffing firm Hudson reported.

The Hudson Employment Index for accounting and finance workers climbed more than three points to 106.8 in May, up from 103.7, ending a steady seven-month decline that began after the sector's reading peaked at 122.7 last September.

The number of accounting and finance industry workers expecting their firm to expand the workforce rose from 31 percent to 35 percent. As a result, job security concerns subsided, with the percentage worried about job loss falling from 23 percent to 19 percent, Hudson said.

Nationally, however, confidence among workers across all sectors fell 2.5 points, from 102.4 to 99.9, marking the first time that the index has fallen below its base of 100.

Hudson said that workers continue to be concerned about their personal finances, with the percentage of workers expecting their financial situation to improve down 2 points to 39 percent, and the number anticipating their financial situation to worsen rose 2 points to 42 percent.

Slightly more workers are worried about their firms' hiring plans. Nineteen percent of the workforce expects their organizations to lay off staff in the coming months, up from 17 percent in March and April. The percent of workers nervous about losing their own jobs rose to its highest level in more than a year, at 22 percent, while the number of workers expecting their firms to hire was essentially unchanged.

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