Jobs and starting salaries on increase in Scotland

The number of people in permanent jobs in Scotland grew along with starting salaries in the last month of 2014, according to a report.

The number of people in permanent jobs in Scotland grew along with starting salaries in the last month of 2014, according to a report.

The growth is evidence of the economic recovery which should continue this year, the Bank of Scotland said.

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Research found that permanent placements increased at a sharp rate while the number of people looking for work fell.

The sharpest increase in new jobs was in Aberdeen, with Edinburgh the top city for part-time and temporary work last month.

The IT and computing sector had the biggest increase in new jobs, while nursing and medical care work was the fastest growing for temporary jobs.

Starting salaries rose at close to record levels in the monthly Bank of Scotland Report on Jobs, with the rate of inflation the second-fastest in the survey’s history.

The report’s labour market barometer reached 63.2 in ­December, up from 60.1 in ­November. The barometer measures areas such as levels of staff demand, employment and wages to create a snapshot of labour-market conditions.

The figure is measured against a baseline of 50, with anything above this figure representing an improvement and anything below a deterioration.

Donald MacRae, chief economist at Bank of Scotland, said: “December’s barometer reversed much of the loss in November, with the overall reading at 63.2 showing a strong performance in the month.

“The number of people appointed to jobs rose, with particularly strong growth in appointments to permanent jobs. The number of vacancies rose at a faster pace, while starting salaries rose at near-record levels.

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“These results provide further evidence that the economic recovery continued at the end of last year and looks set to carry on into 2015.”

Scotland Office Minister David Mundell said: “This shows our longterm economic plan is working and we are building a secure and resilient economy built to last.

“Going into 2015, Scotland’s economy is expected to grow and build on two successive years of economic growth. The challenges our oil and gas sector are facing and the impact this is having on jobs underline the serious challenges which remain for our economy.

“With the large single domestic market, wider tax base and economic stability which comes from being part of the UK, we can create the conditions to support business and our vital industries and help them create more opportunities for Scots across the country.”

Deputy First Minister John Swinney said: “We welcome this further evidence of a strengthening labour market in Scotland, with a stronger result than for the UK as a whole.

“The Bank of Scotland report shows an improving employment picture for the 50th consecutive month, with the demand for permanent staff increasing in Scotland.

“The report comes at a time when the Scottish labour market is performing well across a range of measures.

“For instance, Scotland currently has the highest employment rate, lowest unemployment rate and lowest inactivity rate of all four UK ­nations.”