Reasons to be optimistic

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Is 2007 set to be a delight or a disaster? 'A delight' suggests one recruitment firm chief executive. That may not be so come 2009.

"I'm very upbeat about 2007," says Robert Thesiger, chief executive of recruiter Morgan McKinley. "I think we're coming to the end of year three of a classic recruitment cycle, which lasts anything from six to eight years - 2007 or even halfway through 2008 could be the top."

Why is Thesiger so optimistic? Firstly, he says 2006 is the first year in this cycle that financial services recruitment has been truly frenetic - suggesting there may be more to come. Secondly, a survey of 25 top banks conducted by Morgan McKinley suggests a massive 75% of them are expecting finance hiring in 2007 to exceed the level of 2006.

Putting that into context implies 2007 could be massive for financial services recruiters and job seekers alike. Morgan McKinley's research indicates that finance vacancies peaked at 9,891 in June this year, up 60% on the highpoint of 2005.

What about allegations that banks are gearing up to make widespread job cuts? Don't worry, says Thesiger: "Making noises about redundancies is a good way of massaging expectations down before bonuses are paid."

And when the downturn does take hold, Thesiger predicts it won't be as bad as the last one for anyone axed, "Financial services is a lot more globalised than it was ten years ago - people will easily be able to move to new positions overseas."

Wishful thinking or a new world order? It might be worth asking those who've lost their jobs at Dresdner.

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