The total contract value of outsourcing contracts signed\n in the third quarter of 2007 was down 16 percent, with the\n actual value of the contracts signed shrinking as well,\n according to outsourcing adviser TPI. At the heart of\n the decline: the slowing pace of contract awards in the U.S.\n TPI\u2019s numbers show that U.S. companies are also\n keeping a lid on outsourcing growth, with new scope down 50\n percent from last year.\n MORE ON Outsourcing\n \n What Are the Rules for Billion-Dollar Deals?\n \n The Rupee\u2019s Rise, The Dollar\u2019s Demise and You\n \n What Does It Take to Get IT Outsourcers to Innovate?\n \n Seven Reasons to Outsource to India\n \n Eight Reasons Not to Outsource to India\n Conversely, Europe and Asia are showing growth in\n outsourcing deals year over year, with Europe accounting for\n more than a 50 percent share of global market deals. New scope\n is up 36 percent in Europe and 72 percent in Asia Pacific,\n according to TPI. Competitor EquaTerra also found that outsourcing\n growth was strongest in the Europe\/Middle East\/Africa\n geography.Almost as many Global 500 companies are inking outsourcing\n deals in the U.S. and Europe (43 percent of leading U.S.\n companies and 52 percent of leading European companies), says\n TPI. It\u2019s just that the American deals are smaller.Mega-deals\u2014those once popular billion-dollar-plus\n behemoths\u2014are still getting signed (by General Motors,\n Johnson & Johnson, Credit Suisse, Reuters and the U.K. Post\n Office, among others). They\u2019re just getting less\n \u201cmega.\u201d The average size of the billion-plus\n contract in the first quarter of last year was $9.6 billion. In\n the third quarter of 2007, it was down to $2.4 billion, TPI\n reports.Major India-based vendors have seen their U.S. customer\n revenue increase 37 percent, despite the slowdown in overall\n outsourcing in the Americas, says TPI, adding that \u201cthe\n latter exemplifies the diversity in the global outsourcing\n industry as well as India\u2019s expanding influence and\n strength.\u201d Meanwhile, EquaTerra\u2019s third-quarter\n survey revealed increasing interest in offshoring\n outside of India. Wage inflation, U.S. dollar weakness\n and changing buyer demands are driving the expansion of\n delivery centers in China, Central and South America, and\n Central and Eastern Europe, EquaTerra notes.Business process outsourcing (BPO) analyst firm Nelson Hall says the BPO market is hot,\n with year-over-year total contract value growth of 26\n percent in the third quarter and 54 percent growth during\n the first nine months of the year. TPI characterized global\n BPO growth as \u201csluggish.\u201d But both TPI and\n Nelson Hall\u2019s reports agreed that BPO contract\n activity was strongest in North America.