The City is smashing downbeat forecasts that Brexit would ignite a mass exodus of workers from the Square Mile to the Continent, reveals a fresh study released today.
London’s top banks, brokers and fund managers are launching a recruitment offensive as the spectre of the pandemic over the capital recedes.
In the final three months of last year, City firms were actively recruiting for 40 per cent more roles compared to the same period in 2019, before the Covid-19 crisis, according to recruiter Morgan McKinley.
The Square Mile’s booming jobs market illustrates predictions that hundreds of thousands of City workers would take flight to the Continent after Brexit were misplaced.
Hakan Enver, managing director at Morgan McKinley UK, said: “Back in 2016, there were numerous reports circulating that up to 100,000 jobs would be lost from the UK to the EU following Brexit.”
“Five years later, this hasn’t happened and is likely never to happen in those volumes,” he added.
The number of available jobs in London’s financial services industry was more than double registered in the final quarter of 2020, hitting 8,140 in the three months to December.
Claire Tunley, chief executive of the Financial Services Skills Commission, told City A.M.: “The financial services industry sees the need to invest in skills for the future.”
“We knew before the pandemic that the nature of jobs in the City were changing and this research shows that,” she added.
Top City talent have been taking advantage of a skills squeeze by leaving their jobs to secure a bump in pay.
Workers hopping jobs bagged a 19 per cent pay rise, driven by the Square Mile’s top employers hiking starting wages to muscle out competition from other City firms.
A booming fintech scene and London’s long-standing position as one of the world’s top financial centres has incentivised workers to choose London to forge a career ahead of cities in Europe after Brexit.
“The preference is to remain in London and consider an alternative role here, where the markets continue to be buoyant,” Enver added.
“Long term, London will remain one of the main financial and technology hubs, as it continues to innovate and lead by example,” he said.