Companies sign up more staff but at lower wages

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Employers recruited marginally more staff last month but at lower salaries, a leading recruitment agency said.

Reed's job index rose by just a single point to 103 in May but a similar index of salaries for new jobs dipped by four points to only 95. Martin Warnes, the managing director of, said the recruitment market was better than it might be given the eurozone crisis, but the outlook remained cautious.

"While it is good that the job demand trend is upwards again, recovery remains fragile and salaries for new staff dropped 3 per cent in May," Mr Warnes added. "The private sector has yet to demonstrate it is taking up the slack in advance of public-sector cuts."