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Budget response from retail recruitment specialist Reed Retail
Peter Sherlock, divisional director of Reed Retail, the senior and executive-level retail recruitment specialist, comments on how the Budget will impact on the UK jobs market.
Peter Sherlock: “From a recruitment point of view, we wanted a Budget that carefully balances cost-cutting with confidence-raising to ensure that job creation in the private sector is stimulated. With this in mind, a fiscally neutral budget coupled with the promise of one million more jobs to be created in the economy over five years, is welcome news.
“Looking at the UK jobs market as a whole, job creation is an essential part of a strong economy and business confidence and optimism are vital in securing continued employment opportunities. Measures like reducing corporation tax and simplifying the tax system for small firms will therefore be welcomed by employers.
“The news that the personal income tax allowance is to raised to just over £9,000 from next April coupled with relaxed Sunday trading laws during the summer months could lead to increased consumer spending - positive news for the UK’s retail sector. However, this may be tempered by the fact that hoped for plans to scrap the rise in fuel duty did not materialise.
“Recent research that we carried out with employers across all sectors has found that two fifths are worried about losing talent from their organisation, with one in five concerned about the migration of talent to other sectors or countries. News that the 50p top rate of tax will be cut to 45p and that individuals will benefit from more take-home pay due to the changes in income tax allowance is therefore very welcome as it will not only make people better off, but also make the UK a more attractive place for businesses, retaining and attracting top talent.
“The most recent Reed job index, published by reed.co.uk earlier this month, showed that the rise in new jobs was at a two-year high in February, with salaries returning to the levels of late-2009. So this news, coupled with some glimmers of hope in today’s Budget, will hopefully mean that we see job creation strengthening over the coming months.”