Think tanks warn of bonus and job cuts in City of London

IPO listings fall by more than half

Laura Dew
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Think tanks warn of bonus and job cuts in City of London

City workers have been warned of an upcoming period of market difficulty and economic malaise which could lead to job losses and a "collapse" in bonus payments, in a series of reports by economic think tanks.

According to City AM, five separate bodies including the Centre for Economic and Business Research (CEBR) and PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) have warned of a difficult period ahead.

This turbulence is driven by a variety of factors, including negative interest rates globally and a slowdown in economic growth, according to these reports.

This could lead to layoffs in City firms, a collapse in bonus payments and reductions in investment and sales, the think tanks warn. 

Douglas McWilliams, president of the CEBR, told City AM: "Banking activity has been pretty flat, stock market turnover is down about a fifth in a year, M&A is a disaster zone. As these activities disappear, measured productivity for the UK will fall."

He also predicts bonuses for City workers could "collapse" amid "a lot of layoffs" this year.

The PwC IPO indicator shows 2016 has seen the weakest start to the year for new listings since the financial crisis. London IPOs already decreased 16% during 2015 and were expected to fall further this year. 

PwC: Fund manager salaries under threat amid fee transparency crackdown

Meanwhile, the value of new listings in London has fallen by half since the end of 2015, while global proceeds from IPOs have come down by two things in the last 12 months, at £10.1bn.

Elsewhere, the Lloyds/Markit purchasing managers index shows the slowest growth in new business activity since February 2013, while a survey of over 8,000 firms by the British Chamber of Commerce found "softening economic growth". 

Accountants BDO described a slowing services sector and a drop in business confidence, and the National Institute of Economic and Social Research (NIESR) estimates the British economy grew by 0.3% in the first quarter, rather than the 0.6% predicted in the fourth quarter of 2015.

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