Grads see brighter days

THE 1993-94 recruiting year proved to be better for college graduates than past years, with stronger economic growth contributing to increased opportunities. But, while starting-salary offers to most graduates have risen since last year, low inflation rates continue to keep most increases to a minimum, according to the ``CPC Salary Survey'' published by College Placement Council Inc. of Bethlehem, Pa.

Service-sector employers provided most employment opportunities - 57.5 percent - this year for college graduates, says Dawn Oberman, a council official. Manufacturing employers extended 28.8 percent of offers to this year's graduates; government and nonprofit employers provided 13.7 percent. Overall, public accounting employers extended the most job offers - 14.1 percent - to this year's graduates.

Candidates in most business disciplines posted respectable gains in their starting-salary offers. Accounting graduates' salaries rose 3.2 percent to average $28,372, while that of business-administration graduates rose 2.2 percent to $25,102. Sneaker sales rebound

SALES of athletic footwear rose 5.2 percent in number of pairs in the first four months of 1994 but edged up only 1.4 percent in retail dollars, according to a national consumer study by the Athletic Footwear Association in North Palm Beach, Fla.

Consumers purchased 115,779,000 pairs of athletic footwear from January through April, and they spent $3,378,000,000 during that period.

``[The] post-recession demand for athletic footwear is greater than it has been for several years, but ... competitive pressures are containing prices,'' says Gregg Hartley, executive director of the AFA.

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