Jobseekers enjoy lower competition for jobs as number of vacancies recovers slightly

Natasha Clark
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Cambridge remained the best city in the UK to find a job (Source: Getty)

Advertised vacancies were up 0.8 per cent in September in the latest sign that the job market could be experiencing a slight recovery after a slip over the summer.

The total number of advertised jobs was 1,132,844 in September, a slight rise from the 1,123,365 seen in August, new figures from Adzuna showed, concluding that confidence is returning to the market as Brexit plans begin to take shape.

There were 0.47 jobseekers per posted job vacancy in September, down from 0.49 in August. The employment rate has held at 74.5 per cent - the highest level since records began in 1971.

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Since September 2015 the number of UK vacancies is down 3.8 per cent overall, but the number of jobseekers per vacancy has also plummeted 18.9 per cent.

However, salaries are also down on last year - 1.3 per cent since last September and 0.3 per cent in the last month. The average salary advertised stood at £32,688.

All regions of the UK showed decreases in the average salary apart from Wales, the latest figures show. The region showed a 0.3 per cent boost in average salaries to £27,967, but this is still far below the national average.

Cambridge remained the best city in the UK to find a job, with 0.6 jobseekers per vacancy advertised. Guilford, Oxford and Reading also made the top five.

Best cities to find a job:

1. Cambridge - 0.06 jobseekers per vacancy
2. Guilford - 0.09
3. Oxford - 0.12
4. Reading - 0.14
5. Winchester - 0.17

The worst city to find a job continues to be Belfast, with a rate of 4.18 jobseekers per advert. Sunderland followed at the bottom of the table, but the recent decision from Nissan to develop more cars there could boost this in future months.

The worst cities to find a job:

1. Belfast - 4.18 jobseekers per vacancy
2. Sunderland - 3.07
3. Hull - 2.29
4. Bradford - 2.24
5. Middlesborough - 2.23

The property sector defied rumours of a slowdown with a 7.9 per cent increase in average salaries across 12,075 vacancies. That works out as a 19 per cent increase in the number of jobs from this time last year. The charity sector is also on the rise - wages rose 3.2 per cent since last year.

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Some have said the figures prove that warnings about the economy prior to the Brexit vote were scare stories, and the economy continues to be strong.

Figures out last week from the Office for National Statistics showed the economy is faring better than expected, with 0.5 per cent growth in the last quarter. Some predicted economic growth could slow to 0.1 per cent in the event of a vote to

Doug Monro, co-founder of Adzuna, says there is no longer such a binary choice between roles which offer more job satisfaction and ones that pay well.

He said:

The relative resilience of the jobs market should be a positive indicator to employers that it always pays to invest in hiring and rewarding high-quality staff. The property sector is a prime example of how the jobs market has the potential to withstand surprises that may arise as a result of an uncertain political climate.

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