Most U.S. chief financial officers aren't planning to reduce their workforces in 2012, despite growing pessimism over the economy, according to a survey by Bank of America Merrill Lynch. Forty-six percent said they expect to add employees and 48% said they expect to maintain staffing levels next year. "While they remain cautious, it is encouraging to see that reservations about the economy won’t translate to reductions in the overall workforce," says Laura Whitley, the company's head of commercial banking.

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