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Most London City Workers Received 2008 Bonuses – Survey

Most of London’s financial services workers received a 2008 bonus amid turmoil within the sector, a survey by Morgan McKinley showed.

Almost 73% of financial services workers got a 2008 bonus, the London-based recruitment firm said in a statement, with 16% claiming to receive a higher payout than in 2007. More than half said their latest bonus was lower than the previous year’s, it added.

Survey respondents said the key reason for the reduction in their bonus payout was because their employer had implemented an across-the-board reduction in bonuses.

“There were some individuals who didn’t receive a bonus because they were either made redundant or their firms completely cut the bonus pot,” says Andrew Evans, managing director of Morgan McKinley.

In addition, the first quarter of 2009 showed some signs of an increase in confidence levels within the City of London as hiring activity rose slightly for the third month in a row. During March 2009, the number of new job vacancies within London’s financial services sector increased by 10% compared with the previous month. However, compared with last year, recruitment levels were still considerably reduced, falling 57% versus March 2008.

The number of financial services professionals who began looking for a new job also rose during March 2009, registering a 9% increase on February, the survey found. Compared to the same month the previous year, the number of financial services professionals entering the jobs market was still down 26%.

Evans says: “Many of the cost saving and efficiency initiatives being implemented by financial institutions over the past three months are nearing completion. Therefore, employers are now more accurately able to identify where there are skills gaps in their workforce and are starting to hire again to fulfil these requirements, albeit at reduced volumes compared with 12 months ago.”

The average City salary rose 5% compared with the same month the previous year to 52,122. This was a 3% increase on February 2009, the survey found.

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