City vacancies tumble again

CITY vacancies shrank by 16 per cent in November, with candidates facing the toughest competition for years.

There are now five qualified candidates for every available post, according to figures published by financial services recruitment firm Astbury Marsden today.

The firm said the ratio of candidates to vacancies is at its highest since December 2008, compared to at the start of this year when there were just 1.7 candidates per job.

Mark Cameron, operations chief at Astbury Marsden said: “For those City staff who are looking for a new job it means they are being pitted against more intense competition then they may have faced for years.”

The firm estimates that 2,670 jobs were created in November, compared to 3,160 in October.

The fall continues a trend from the previous month, with October’s figure 18 per cent down from September’s.

However, the City figures buck a more positive trend across the rest of the UK, according to recruitment group Reed’s latest job index.

The company’s benchmark index rose four points to 133 in November to reach its highest level in 23 months, with employer demand for new staff 20 per cent higher than the same time last year.