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Salt Lake area employers are showing some optimism about their hiring for the first three months of 1989, according to a survey from Manpower Inc., a large temporary help firm.

The survey shows that 27 percent of the area employers polled plan to increase their staff, 53 percent will maintain the current personnel levels and 17 percent will decrease the number of employees. Only 3 percent are unsure of their hiring plans.Robert Katz, owner of Manpower's Salt Lake City office, said the hiring momentum normally slows in the January-March period and the job market situation in the area reflects that to a certain extent.

But the outlook is better than last year when 17 percent of those responding to the survey said they would enlarge their staffs and 13 percent expected cutbacks. For the current quarter, 13 percent expect to hire new people and 23 percent expected some reductions.

The Salt Lake figures compare to the results obtained nationally because 22 percent of the nearly 14,000 firms surveyed plan to expand staffs and 11 percent expect to eliminate some employees. In the West Region, which includes Utah, 22 percent plan to hire more employees and 11 percent expect some reductions.

Locally, job opportunities should increase in durable and non-durable goods manufacturing, the fi-nance/

insurance/real estate sector and educational institutions, Katz said.