In March/April 11, Morgan McKinley surveyed 192 financial services professionals on their payments in the 2010/11 bonus round.  The survey found that 79% received a bonus this year, with 39% receiving a higher amount compared to last year.  In Morgan McKinley’s March 10, survey 47% had received a higher payout compared to the 2008/09 bonus round.

The percentage of respondents dissatisfied with their bonus payment rose this year – with 35% indicating disappointment compared to 27% last year.  Professionals surveyed this year highlighted a reduction in bonus payments across the board as the main reason for lower than expected payments (37%), with 13% saying their bonus was capped.

However while bonuses may be flat compared to last year, professionals have seen pay rises in 2011 with 48% now earning more than they were at the same time last year and 47% on similar basic salaries to last year.  In Morgan McKinley’s February 10 Bonus Satisfaction Survey only 38% of respondents saw their salaries rise on the previous year, with nearly 60% remaining on the same pay.

In addition, the London Employment Monitor shows the average salary for those securing new roles in March 11 compared to those who found new jobs in February 11 dipped by 3% to £54,445, with the overall pattern of salaries for those taking up new jobs remaining stable over the past year.

The April 11 Bonus Satisfaction Survey also shows that a fifth of respondents would move roles to find a better salary, however remuneration was not the most popular reason; most respondents would move to another job for career development rather than the possibility of a higher bonus or salary.

Andrew Evans, Chief Operating Officer, Morgan McKinley financial services commented:

“For the third consecutive year, our Bonus Satisfaction Survey provides real insight into bonus payments across the financial services sector in London.  This year, the survey gives a clear indication that bonuses are still being paid to the majority of City workers. However, in reality only 79% actually received a bonus compared to 88% who ‘expected’ to receive one in our September 10 Bonus Expectations Survey. Additionally, this year fewer employees are happy with their bonus payments, with over a third saying they are ‘dissatisfied’ compared to 27% who were ‘dissatisfied’ in our February 10 Bonus Satisfaction Survey.

“Despite being some way along the road to recovery there were a number of reasons to expect that bonuses might not be as sizeable as pre-recession years across the financial services sector.  These include industry regulations influencing the structure of bonus payments; downward pressure on remuneration during the financial crisis meaning that last year’s bonuses, following an improvement in the market, were very welcome.  In addition, business activity in some pockets of the market decreased in H2 10 relative to H1 10 which would have had a negative impact on bonuses paid out in those areas.

“Evidence from professionals surveyed suggests that basic salaries have risen slightly.  The likely reason for this is to counteract the effect of a slight ‘softening’ of bonus payments as well as what is clearly increased competition in the jobs market to attract and retain the best talent.”