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Slower Growth in UK Unemployment

The UK employment market has shown signs of improving with a lower than expected rise in unemployment.

The recently released the figures which showed an increase of 88,000 to unemploment figures for the three months up to August, to a total of 2.47 million, from the three months up to May. This was an increase in 0.3% from 7.6% to 7.9%.

The Office of National Statistics have announced that this is  lowest rise in unemploment figures since July of 2008.

Meanwhile, those claiming unemployment benefits rose in September by 20,800 to 1.63 million. While this figure is the highest claiming benefits for unemployment since 1997, it is also the lowest rise in figures since May 2008.

Other figures that were released show that:

  • Unemployment for those aged between 16 and 24 rose to 946,000 in the three months to August.
  • Males remain most affected by unemployment with an increase of 76,000 to a total of 1.53 million in the thre months to August.
  • The amount of women unemployed rose slightly (12,000) to 935,000 for the same time period.
  • The amount of women working part time has seen a large increase of 79,000 for the three months ending August with to a total of 5.73 million. Many of these women claim they are working part time due to a lack of full-time positions.
  • There was an increase in average earnings of 1.9% (excluding bonuses) for the three months to August – the lowest since records began!!

Work and Pensions Secretary Yvette Cooper said “Although unemployment isn’t as high today as many feared it would be at the time of the Budget, it remains a serious problem, which is why we must keep increasing support and advice to get people back into jobs.”

These figures have been released a week before the Office of National Statistics release it’s initial estimates for performance of the UK economy during the period of July to September. While there have been signs of an improvement in the economy many analysts remain unconvinced that the economy will post growth and exit recession.

Should the economy fail to post growth then it will be the first time that the UK has endured six successive quarters without economic expansion.