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-EMPLOYMENT OUTLOOK- UK Financial Services Sector Bouncing Back

The UK’s financial services sector is in the vanguard of the economic recovery, with growth in finance sector jobs set to accelerate. According to the ‘CBI/PwC Financial Services Survey’, employment in the finance sector grew at its fastest pace since 2007 and expected employment growth for the first quarter of 2014 is the strongest since the survey began. The authors of the survey estimate that financial services jobs increased by 10,000 in the fourth quarter of 2013 and expect a further rise of 15,000 in Q1 2014. That would take employment in the sector to 1.16m in Q1 2014 (52,000 lower than Q4 2008). “As the recovery takes root in the wider economy, it is beginning to feed through to financial services firms,” said Matthew Fell, director for competitive markets at CBI. “Things are starting to look more ‘normal’ after five years of volatility.” Adrian Kinnersley, managing director of Twenty Recruitment Group, agrees that the market has improved, though he cautions, “it not the heady days of the mid-2000’s boom times.” Adam Buck, chief executive officer of professional recruiter Phaidon International says that the UK financial services sector “has bounced back”, with previously delayed hiring picking up after Christmas.

Read more Recruitment Intentions Among LMO Employers Fall to 54%

The latest research from the Chartered Institute for Personnel and Development (CIPD) has shown employment will continue to grow in the first quarter of 2014, but less so than the fourth quarter of 2013. The Labour Market Outlook (LMO) winter 2013–14 report shows recruitment intentions among LMO employers has fallen to 54% from 65% during the past three months. This is the lowest proportion planning to recruit staff since the LMO survey began in spring 2011. Recruitment intentions are particularly buoyant in financial, insurance activities and real estate (71%), the accommodation, food service activities and arts, entertainment and recreation sector (63%) and in manufacturing (62%). More than two-thirds of employers in the voluntary and not- for-profit sector (67%) plan to hire in the first quarter of 2014. Additionally, SME (small to medium enterprise) employers are significantly more positive about their employment prospects (+40) than large employers (+5).


Student Visa System 'Abused' to Gain Illegal Entry to UK Home Secretary, Theresa May, has launched a clamp down on alleged abuses of student visas after an investigation found the system was providing a "free for all" for illegal entry to the UK. May suspended English language tests set by a major exam board in the UK and temporarily withdrew accreditation from a series of colleges and immigration advisers amid evidence of a thriving market in fraudulent visas. The move came after an undercover investigation by BBC One's Panorama revealed a network of agents was helping overseas students pass English language exams, obtain false documents and doctor their academic records. In one case, an immigration agency is seen offering a package of fake documents needed to secure a one-year visa extension. "For too long many colleges, particularly private or further education colleges, have been selling visas and not education," said May. "It is time for them to face up to their responsibilities as purveyors of education and not abuse." Students need to show they can speak the language, display an appropriate academic record, provide a bank statement to prove they have the necessary funds and win acceptance on to a course run by a Home Office-approved college or university.

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