Latest Public Sector News

17.04.13

Unemployment at 2.56 million

UK unemployment has risen to 2.56 million, up by 70,000 between December 2012 and February 2013, data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows. The unemployment rate for the quarter was 7.9%.

The number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance last month fell by 7,000 to 1.53 million.

Average earnings rose by 0.8% in the year to February, the lowest growth rate since the end of 2009.

Mark Beatson, chief economist at the CIPD, said: “This month’s figures have seen the recent period of sustained employment growth come to an end. The number of people in employment is very marginally down on the previous three month period, with full-time employment increasing but part-time employment falling.

“At the same time, with the population increasing and economic inactivity continuing to fall – which in itself is not a bad thing – this has led to a quite substantial increase in unemployment, up by 70,000 on the previous three month period.

“The question is whether this is a short term blip or whether a lack of demand means that the economy will struggle to create more jobs.”

He added that jobs “cannot be created forever without a growing economy to sustain demand”.

Unison general secretary, Dave Prentis, said: “This rise in unemployment is further proof that the Chancellor has lost his grip on the economy. Every job lost is a personal tragedy and yet compared to pre-crisis levels, there are a million more people facing the misery of unemployment in the UK. The Government has failed every single one of these people.” 

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at opinion@publicsectorexecutive.com

Image c. HelenCobain

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