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City opportunities beckon for IT workers

With a quarter of IT contractors already working in banking, demand in this sector looks set to continue this year
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One in four IT contractors now works in banking — and with the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) and more mergers on the way, there is likely to be continued demand this year.

A survey of 2,500 contractors found that a third of respondents believe the financial services sector will provide the most career opportunities this year — up slightly on last year. In contrast, only 20 percent of contractors think the public sector will offer the most opportunities in 2007.

The continuing boom in mergers and acquisitions and increased transaction volumes are leading to higher demand for IT contractors within investment banks and hedge funds, said Matthew Brown, managing director of contractor services company Giant Group, which conducted the survey.

As well as investment in IT systems to cut the cost of transactions, data security remains a major spending priority in the City, and the introduction of MiFID will also require a significant further outlay on IT systems, he predicted.

By contrast, much of the e-government programme is now complete, reducing demand for contractors in the public sector, he said.

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