Permanent placements in UK fall for first time since September 2012
Although slight, it was the first decline in 45 months. Anecdotal evidence suggested that uncertainty in the lead-up to the EU referendum (data were collected between 13-24 June) had heavily impacted on activity.
Although temporary/contract staff billings continued to increase in June, the rate of growth eased to a nine-month low. Brexit uncertainties were frequently cited by survey respondents.
June data pointed to a further easing of permanent salary growth. The latest increase was the least marked since September 2013. Temp pay also rose at a slower pace, hitting a three-month low.
The availability of staff continued to fall in June. Permanent candidate supply decreased at a marked pace that was sharper than in May, whereas temp availability fell at the slowest rate in 33 months.
London saw a further drop in permanent placements, with the rate of decline the sharpest since December 2012. Scotland saw broadly unchanged placements, while the Midlands and South registered weakening rates of growth. The North posted the strongest increase overall.
Agencies in the South of England reported stagnant temp billings during June, while slower increases were recorded in the Midlands, North, London and Scotland.
Higher demand was signalled for both public and private sector vacancies. The stronger growth was indicated for the latter, with private sector temporary workers seeing the fastest increase overall. ■