After a seemingly endless amount of pay cuts and a sector-wide rise of unemployment for contractors in the first quarter of 2009, recent findings show that job offers for financial IT contractors are on the increase, receiving a 100% boost in March.

According to financial staff screener Powerchex, the demand for contractors in the financial sector has increased steadily since the massive slump in December 2008, when work supply fell by 75%. January and February saw demand for IT contractors increase by 30% and 11%, respectively.

The news may seem a stark contrast to the job cuts suffered across the sector during March, but Powerchex’s Alexandra Kelly explained to Contractor UK that many financers have decided to return to development which had previously been shelved in an effort to cut costs at the end of last year, thus finding themselves in need of system developers. Another source of increase in IT contracts is said to be the Financial Services Authority who, in compliance to its many new regulations, also require IT systems to be developed.

Additional research by agents at Joslin Rowe shows the pace at which financial services hires staff has doubled since September last year, the least affected jobs being in the compliance, risk and audit roles.

“Tracking the time to hire of temporary staff is an excellent temperature gauge,” the firm told Contractor UK. “If temporary recruiting speeds up it’s a strong indication the market is on the turn.”

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