The number of new City jobs created jumped to its highest level in over seven months, at a time of the year when vacancies traditionally decline, according to Astbury Marsden, a leading financial services recruitment firm.

According to Astbury Marsden, 2,500 new jobs were created in November 2013, up 6% from 2,330 the month before.

This is despite November traditionally being a month when hiring tends to wind down ahead of bonuses being announced around Christmas and the first two months of the New Year.

The number of new jobs created was up 38% compared with November last year, when 1,790 new City jobs were created.

Astbury Marsden says that the jump in City job vacancies may be the first signs of a general increase in City activity feeding through to job creation.

In particular banks have benefitted from an improvement in investors’ risk appetite, with an increase of around 10% in the value of FTSE100 since the start of the year, and a 9% increase in the number of M&A deals targeting European countries.*

Mark Cameron, Chief Operating Officer at Astbury Marsden, says:  “There is normally a lull in hiring activity at this time of year, and this is the first time since 2010 that we have seen a reversal of that trend.  This is the long-awaited positive indicator that the City has been hoping for.”

“We have seen more hiring to support growing activity in equities and equities derivatives trading. In particular we are seeing banks put increased resources into the more specialist equity derivative products, and into their quantitative trading programmes.”

Astbury Marsden adds that delivering impending regulatory requirements remain a major driver of City recruitment.  In particular, the introduction of the new European Market Infrastructure Regulation (EMIR) rules that will require firms to use central clearing facilities and report trades in a wider range of derivatives transactions including OTC trades, is prompting banks to expand their specialist regulatory teams.

“The current big headache is the looming implementation of EMIR.  Expectations now are that firms will have to start meeting the reporting requirements in August, and put these trades through clearing from 2015 – that will be a major project.”