Setback as staff placements flatline

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A SEVEN-MONTH period of growth in the number of staff placed in permanent jobs in the North came to an end in April, research shows.

Data for the month showed that the number of permanent staff placements across the North of England was unchanged from March. At a UK level, the figure expanded “solidly” and at a faster pace than that seen the previous month.

Chris Hearld, KPMG’s Leeds office senior partner, said: “The halt that April’s data brought to seven months of job growth in the North highlights the fragile nature of the economic recovery that has recently been hinted at.

“Thankfully, we can look to more positive national news on recruitment which suggests the wider economy might be further along the growth curve than the local market. It is to be hoped therefore last month’s flatlining proves to be nothing more serious than an April shower in the north.”

Temporary or contract staff billings across the North of England rose during April, marking a nine-month sequence of expansion. The overall growth rate was “robust” and faster than in March.

At the national level, temporary appointments fell for the first time since July last year, but only slightly. Three out of four surveyed English regions signalled higher permanent staff placements, with the fastest growth seen in the Midlands, followed by the South and London respectively.

Temporary appointments decreased in London and the South, but rose across the Midlands.