Nearly half of accounting and finance workers are likely to make a job transition in the next 12 months, according to a new survey.

The quarterly survey, conducted in the fourth quarter of last year by Harris International on behalf of the Mergis Group, the professional placement division of SFN Group, found that half of accounting and finance workers said they are confident in their ability to find a new job, up six percentage points from the previous quarter.

Forty-four percent of the accounting and finance workers surveyed said they are likely to make a job transition in the next 12 months, increasing 14 percentage points from the previous quarter.

More than three-fourths (78 percent) of accounting and finance workers are confident in their job security, as compared to 74 percent reporting confidence in the third quarter of 2010.

The Mergis Group Accounting and Finance Employee Confidence Index, a measure of overall confidence among U.S. accounting and finance workers, edged up 2.2 points to 56.1 in the fourth quarter of 2010. Fifty-one percent of accounting and finance workers believe there to be fewer jobs available, but that’s a nine percentage point drop from the third quarter of 2010.

"The Mergis Group Accounting and Finance Confidence Index displayed a moderate, yet optimistic gain in the final quarter of 2010, with a noticeable increase in the amount of workers looking to make a job transition," said Mergis Group president Brendan Courtney in a statement. "Our Index continues to remain in accord with the national economic situation, reflecting mixed sentiment and fluctuating levels of confidence among workers. However, our latest report reveals increased amounts of worker confidence, an indicator that perhaps the economic recovery is gaining traction and 2011 will see a return to healthier hiring activity. If and when that happens, we expect many workers to begin seeking new employment opportunities, with nearly half of accounting and finance workers already reporting the likelihood of job transition in the next 12 months."

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