Post-secondary graduates will be facing a bleak economy and job market in 2012, according to the recently released 2011 Campus Recruitment and Benchmark Report.

The report, which surveyed 324 employers online from August 1 and September 26, said that recruiters predicted a 2.9 per cent dip for job offers and zero increase in starting employee pay. Signing bonuses, which are designed to attract new graduates and that were offered by 15 per cent of employers in 2008, were also glaringly absent from contracts, the survey said.

The salaries of the few who get hired, however, have reportedly increased to an average of $53,717 in 2011, 10 per cent more than the previous year.

A month after the survey was conducted, federal finance minister Jim Flaherty revised his economic growth forecast for 2011 from 2.9 per cent to 2.2 per cent. In mid-December, TD Economics projected that the overall unemployment rate in Canada will increase from 7.4 per cent to 7.5–8 per cent.

With files from Maclean’s OnCampus.

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