Big companies are hiring these days, just not in the U.S., a Wall Street Journal report finds.
A Wall Street Journal analysis of 35 U.S. multinational firms such as Wal-Mart Stores, International Paper, Honeywell International and UPS finds that 75 percent of their hiring in the past two years took place abroad.
Nearly 60 percent of revenue growth between 2009 and 2011 at the companies in the Journal's analysis came from outside the U.S.
Economists say the trend reflects companies' desire to tap growth regions and not cut costs in the U.S.
"If you want to capture market share in China, you're going to have to hire lots of locals," says Arie Lewin, a professor at Duke University's Fuqua School of Business who has studied outsourcing and off-shoring, the Wall Street Journal reports.
"You just can't export that stuff."
Government data reflects a similar trend.
Worldwide employment by U.S. multinational companies increased 0.5 percent in 2010 to 34 million workers, with increases in both the United States and abroad, the Commerce Department says in a recent report.
Foreign payrolls grew by 1.5 percent while domestic payrolls grew by 0.1 percent.
"Changes in the share of [multinational corporate] activity at the U.S. parent do not necessarily indicate production shifting between U.S. parents and their foreign affiliates," the Commerce Department's Bureau of Economic Analysis says in the April reports.
"Other factors that may be associated with changes in the share include different rates of economic growth in the Unites States and in specific markets where investment is occurring abroad, or the creation of new market opportunities abroad that cannot be served by exports from the United States."
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