The year seems to have started on a positive front. Appetite to recruit has been solid across most of our functions and general activity has been higher than this time last year. The only pocket of hiring that has been relatively slow coming out of the blocks has been that of senior hires in middle office and operations. This is usually a seasonal aspect of recruitment. Bonuses are paid over the next few months and generally the more senior you are the higher the percentage of the total compensation is made up of the bonus number. We would therefore expect senior people to wait until they have been paid their bonus before resigning from their current role. This would lead to an increase in senior roles in early spring. This however is not a normal year.
The lack of clarity in the market is having the effect of stifling opportunities at houses that have interests in Europe. It seems to be the case that the larger the institution the lower the level of recruitment. On the other side of the coin it is the smaller houses, whose exposure to Europe is minimal, where the momentum and desire to grow is actually increasing. Please do get in touch if you would like to discuss the market in more detail.