Gallup: Quality Jobs Harder to Come By, More Americans Say

December 20, 2012 - 4:26 PM

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In this Friday, Dec. 7, 2012, photo, a help wanted sign is posted on the front window of a clothing boutique in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes)

( – Fewer Americans believe now is a good time to find a quality job, compared to last month, a new Gallup poll found.

The number of Americans saying the time is right to find a quality job fell sharply in December to 19 percent – down from 24 percent in November. Three in four Americans, or 76 percent, say this is a bad time to find a quality job. In January 2007, 48 percent said it was a good time to finds a quality job – the record high for this measure.

The availability of quality jobs is considered a key to economic growth.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for mid-December is 7.6 percent – down 0.2 percentage points compared to November (7.8 percent).

Underemployment, which is measured without season adjustment, is 17.3 percent in mid-December about the same as November (17.2 percent). Gallup combined the percentage of unemployed with the percentage of part-time workers who are looking for full-time work to get the underemployment number.

“Many Americans are settling for part-time jobs as 2012 comes to an end because they cannot find full-time work,” Gallup said.

The poll was conducted from Nov. 16 to Dec. 15 and was based on interviews conducted by landline and cell phone with about 30,000 Americans who are actively working.