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North is the new South following yesterday’s budget


George Osborne yesterday delivered his final budget before the general election and one item on his agenda was to firmly promote the North West and Yorkshire.

A ‘Northern powerhouse’ is his vision, he claims. Is the Chancellor a friend of the North? Or was it just a cleverly worded speech? Whatever your standpoint, it’s hard to refute what the Chancellor said. Business outside London is certainly booming and unbeknownst to most, the delightful county of Yorkshire created more jobs in 2014 than the whole of France! The Midlands created a job every 10 minutes according to Mr Osborne.

So, what does this mean for finance professionals? Well, more work for starters. Our offices in Leeds and Manchester can certainly vouch that they have seen an increase in business over the last 12 months. While many industries, such as legal, saw staggered business development in 2014, accountants were more in demand. Yorkshire saw an increased demand for auditors and finance analysts and our Manchester office noticed that businesses need more commercial analysts and finance business partners.

To the delight of Greater Manchester, the Chancellor said that the region would be allowed to keep 100% of growth in local business rates. Great news for all. Favourable business rates mean more business and more business equals a need for more finance professionals to work in-house and within accountancy firms.

Our salary and market trend report (due to be released soon) found that more finance professionals were willing to relocate outside of London, with Yorkshire and the North West being two of the most popular destinations of choice at 9% and 8% respectively.

Labour leader Ed Miliband said it was a budget that "simply won't be believed". Is this the sound of a man who knows that the plan is working? Or does Mr Miliband have a better plan in place? I guess we’ll only find our after May 7th.  Either way, these are exciting times for the North.



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