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Fall in bonuses means almost half of City workers search for new jobs

Banks are continuing to exercise restraint around bonuses, leading to almost half of City workers, looking for a new job, according to research from recruitment consultancy Hays.

The survey of more than 1,100 London City workers found 55% said their bonus had either decreased or they didn't receive one compared to last year, with 45% of those with 15 years experience or more seeing a decrease in their bonus level.

The research revealed the decrease in bonuses has led to almost half (44%) of all City workers looking for a new job.

According to the research, experienced finance workers were most likely to see a squeeze in their bonus, as 44% of those with 10 years experience or more reported a decrease in their bonus.

Geoff Fawcett, director of Hays financial markets, said: "Without a doubt, the days of the big bonus culture have definitely come to an end and they are unlikely to return anytime soon.

"According to our survey, it is those employees with over 15 years experience who have seen the biggest squeeze in their bonus pots. However, there is still a place for bonuses providing they are geared to medium or long-term goals.

"The challenge for banks continues to be striking the right balance between acting responsibly and retaining their top talent so that their businesses remain competitive in the long term," Fawcett said.

When asked about satisfaction levels with their bonus payout, men were more likely to be dissatisfied with their bonus than women. While employees with between six and 10 years experience were also the most dissatisfied with their bonus. The highest level of satisfaction with their payouts was among corporate governance professionals (36%).

Fawcett added: "Our research shows corporate governance professionals are least likely to see a decrease in their bonus with nearly half of these people reporting an increase or no change in their bonus level.

"With regulation top of the agenda in the banking industry, the demand for specialists in compliance, risk and internal audit remains strong as banks try to keep hold of key workers so they can meet their regulatory obligations and avoid fines."