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Singapore job ads on the decline

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Singapore was the only country in the Asian region to show a drop in professional job ads for Q1 this year.

According to the Robert Walters Asia Index Q1 2013, Singapore showed a slight decline of 0.7% quarter-on-quarter, while the regional average stood at +4%.

Mark Ellwood, managing director of Robert Walters Southeast Asia, said recruitment efforts here might be affected by the strength of the Singapore dollar.

The Singapore dollar has resulted in low-margin businesses choosing to base their hub in Malaysia rather than Singapore, with the demand for HR roles in Malaysia growing as much as 26.7% quarter-on-quarter, and that for consultants and analysts jumping up 29.5%.

“It is also important to remember that the Chinese New Year holidays would have had a depreciating effect on advertising activity, so Q2’s advertising figures should give a clearer indicator of recruitment demand,” he said.

However, while the high local dollar may put off some, it has help drive job advertising for property management roles up by 11.9%.

Toby Fowlston, managing director of Robert Walters Singapore, said as Singapore moves further up the value chain, it will continue to attract high net-worth individuals, hence also driving up demand in areas such as accounting and finance (4.1%), and medical services (6.1%).

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