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City hiring hits a bump in the road as international crises dent confidence

City hiring hits a bump in the road as international crises dent confidence

But new roles created still up 1.5% month on month in March 2011
The recovery in the City jobs market has slowed due to concerns about the global economic impact of international crises, such as unrest in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and the earthquake in Japan, says Astbury Marsden, a leading financial services recruitment firm. According to Astbury Marsden, there were 5,830 new roles created in March 2011, a very modest 1.5% rise on the 5,745 created in February 2011. This is marginally down on the 5,890 new roles created in March 2010. Mark Cameron, Chief Operating Officer at Astbury Marsden, says: Traditionally at this time of year we see a surge in the number of roles coming into the City jobs market as employers replace staff that have left after getting their bonus. This year however there have been a number of shocks the markets have had to absorb which have temporarily slowed hiring decisions by City institutions.Considering the number of surprises that have been unleashed over the last month, overall the City jobs market is still quite buoyant.Astbury Marsden adds that the crises and the request from Portugal for EU bail out have all combined to temper the City jobs market. Says Mark Cameron: IPO and M&A advisory fees for investment banks have taken a recent hit as the international crises and the accompanying spike in oil prices have created greater market uncertainty. This is bound to impact on demand for City staff. We dont anticipate this will continue in the longer term but banks are adopting a cautious and sensible approach to staff hires. The global economy is still fairly fragile, so banks are very much in a wait and see mode. Astbury Marsden adds that several major investment banks are still awaiting the publication this month of the independent banking commission interim report.Says Mark Cameron: City employers are waiting for more detail on the impact of the ICB report and obviously few are willing to commit to bolstering staff numbers before they find out more about how the report will affect their businesses. Astbury Marsden says that there were approximately 10,140 City staff looking for new jobs in March 2011, a 20% increase on the 8,430 looking in February 2011. Astbury Marsden adds that this influx of candidates is typical for this time of year, as City staff review their salary and job expectations.

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