While it will hardly lead to much dancing in the street, the latest (and decidedly) gloomy Report on Jobs from the Recruitment and Employment Confederation and KPMG may be less a depressing read for the UK’s PAYE umbrella contractors than for people seeking permanent roles.

Although job vacancies continued to grow in September, the rate at which they did so was lower than at any point since October 2009, with permanent vacancies hitting their slowest growth rate since August 2009.

REC Chief Executive Kevin Green explained that two factors appeared to have coincided to produce the slowdown. Employers became exceptionally cautious about hiring in September and weak consumer confidence has led people to remain in existing posts rather than seeking new jobs. Moreover, while the private sector is producing new jobs, it simply isn’t yet able to offset public sector job losses.

He urged the Chancellor to introduce a National Insurance Holiday of at least one year to encourage small businesses to hire young people, an initiative he regards as critically important – employers can no longer compel older workers to retire at age 65, with the result that unless firms are incentivised to create new jobs, there will be fewer posts available for young candidates.

He added “We are also calling on the Bank of England Monetary Committee to resume quantitative easing when it meets this week as the economy now needs all the help it can get to kick start growth.”

Even so, projects will still need to be completed and there is a strong possibility that employers will turn to umbrella companies for fixed term contractors in order to get essential work done.

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