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Recruitment: Mine the three months

For some FX traders the prospect of an extended holiday seems to be the deal clincher for switching jobs.

The recent defection of Marcus Browning from Merrill Lynch to Citigroup, where he is to become global head of FX trading, has highlighted the fact that making staff serve a three-month notice period does little to deter them from leaving their jobs [see FX pedallers on an uphill learning curve, Euromoney, March 2006]. Browning has taken a team of four colleagues with him. All have effectively now left Merrill, although they remain on the payroll.

The likelihood is that none of them is sat at home twiddling the thumbs in boredom, although a sustained period of house husbandry (or wifery) might soon convince them that being chained to their desks for 12-hour shifts is not necessarily the hardest job in the world. Negotiating the school run without committing infanticide can often be just as much of a challenge as taking a punt on where the dollar is heading.

Several traders have referred Euromoney to an ironic fact: the prospect of three months’ paid leave is actually starting to become the clincher of negotiated moves to rival banks.

The director of a recruitment consultancy that is strong in FX agrees with these views, noting that the three-month contract is only a small part of the overall package that banks are finding they have to provide to retain staff.

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