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Employer demand Edges up in May, but salaries fall by 3%

Employer demand for new UK workers rose by one point (1%) in May compared to April, to give a Reed Job Index reading of 103.
However salaries on offer for new jobs dropped down four points (3%) over the same period to give a Salary Index reading of 95, according to the Reed Job Index published today.
Each month the Reed Job Index tracks the number of new job opportunities on offer compared to the previous month and against a baseline of 100 set in December last year. The Reed Job Index is based on data from the UKs largest job board,, which every day lists over 90,000 job opportunities from 8,000 recruiters across 37 career sectors throughout the UK.
Job demand rose most in the Charity & Voluntary sector, with demand also up in sectors such as Marketing & PR, Legal, Secretarial, and for both fully-qualified and non-qualified Accountants. Interestingly, demand rose in the Public Sector compared to the previous month, perhaps as the sector sought new people in advance of anticipated recruitment freezes. The Public Sector Index rose 23 points compared to the previous month to reach 97, back up close to last years level.
However even the sectors with greatest job demand saw salaries stay steady or fall back. Across the Index the average salary for May was 31,871, compared to 33,220 in April and 33,414 in December 2009.
Job demand in London has returned to growth, with the London Job Index now at 102. However job demand in the capital is now below the national average, in contrast to earlier in the year when the London economy was growing at a much faster rate than elsewhere in the UK. London salaries dropped by 3% in May compared to the previous month, in line with the fall across the country.
Elsewhere in the regions, some areas saw strong demand, led by increased job numbers in East Anglia and the West Midlands. However both Scotland and Wales fell back in May compared to April, with job demand now lower than in December 2009.
Martin Warnes, Managing Director of, comments on the Reed Job Index for May: Employer demand rose in May compared to April, with economic confidence edging up in spite of the disruption of the election and turmoil across Europes financial markets.
While it is good that the job demand trend is upwards again, recovery remains fragile and salaries for new staff dropped by 3% in May. In spite of George Osbornes hopes, the private sector has yet to demonstrate it is taking up the slack in advance of public sector cuts.However although employers are still suffering from cost constraints, some are seizing this opportunity to recruit talented people at high value to help grow their businesses.


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