City back office pay on a tear

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Middle and back office staff working in the City of London are benefiting from surging pay according to a new survey.

The latest salary survey from Morgan McKinley, the back and middle office recruiter, suggests in the three months since February 2005 alone, average salaries have risen 7.5% to 49,800.

By comparison, average salaries have risen just 3.5% since May 2004. Middle and back office salaries fell between July and December 2004 as hiring slackened and banks made redundancies.

Robert Thesiger, chief executive of Morgan McKinley, says senior and mid-ranking professionals are benefiting as organizations hire to cope with increased market activity. "A shortage of high calibre candidates means banks are more willing to pay a premium for candidates with the right skill sets, which is resulting in upward pressure on salaries," he says.

Andrew Chancellor, head of financial services recruitment at Robert Walters, agrees salaries are rising. "Demand is outstripping supply," he says. "Whenever that happens, pay goes up."

Chancellor disputes suggestions pay has risen 7.5% since February, however. "Average salaries have probably gone up 5%-10% since last year, but not massively in the past three months."

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