With the release of Visual Studio 2005 and the growing popularity and maturity of .NET, it seems more and more businesses are looking for .NET developers, as opposed to Java developers. Java popularity also suffers from competition from other Open Source languages and platforms such as Perl and Ruby (on rails).
For example, a quick search [Jan/2/06] on dice.com for .NET for '.NET' finds 9444 positions; 'Java' returns 2635.
Note that a search for 'C#' only returns 797 positions; .NET is by far a stronger brand name than C#, and the '#' sign wreaks havoc with multiple search engines.
Similar nationwide searches in hotjobs.yahoo.com read
Java : 6126
.Net : 10871
C# : # not supported in yahoo search
XML is also becoming a strong requirement:
XML (hotjobs.yahoo): 3396
XML (Dice): 6949
Tags: jobs .net java software market