UK Unemployment Falls To 2.65 Million
UK unemployment fell for the first time in nearly a year in the three months to February to reach 2.65 million, according to official figures.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the number of people out of work fell by 35,000 between December and February, taking the joblessness rate to 8.3%, down from 8.4% the previous quarter.
It is the first quarterly fall in unemployment since the three months to May 2011.
The number of people claiming jobseeker's allowance increased for the seventeenth month in a row in March, up by 3,600 to 1.61 million, the smallest monthly rise since last December.
But other figures from the ONS revealed a worse picture: the number of unemployed women increased by 8,000 in the latest quarter to 1.14 million, the highest figure for almost 25 years, while the number of people out of work for over a year jumped to its highest level since 1996.
The figures also showed an 89,000 rise in the number of people working part-time because they could not find full-time jobs, to a total of 1.4 million, the highest figure since records began in 1992.
Employment minister Chris Grayling said: "Today's figures are a step in the right direction but we still have a long way to go.
"I am particularly encouraged that overall employment is now growing despite reductions in the public sector.
"There are still economic challenges ahead and the Government is reacting by helping people to find employment through initiatives with the private sector at their heart."
The Government said that in the past month 160,000 incentives of £2,275 had become available to employers who take on young people in the Work Programme as part of the £1bn Youth Contract.
Joblessness among those aged 16 to 64 fell slightly over the last quarter, to reach 8.5%.
Stephen Oversby, of children's charity Barnardo's, said: "This is no time for complacency.
"Despite youth unemployment statistics having fallen, there remains more than a million 16-to-24-year-olds looking for but not finding work."
GMB general secretary Paul Kenny added: "We are far from out of the woods yet.
"By recklessly aborting the economic recovery under way in the UK in 2010, the Government has stopped 400,000 young workers getting a job."
The latest figures came as new research showed almost a million people will have been out of work for more than a year by the end of 2012.
The report by the IPPR think tank said long-term unemployment was the "hidden crisis" facing the UK economy.
They also follow a spate of job losses announced on Tuesday.
Almost 500 jobs are under threat after supermarket milk supplier Dairy Crest revealed plans to close two dairies.
On the same day, Aquascutum, the 160-year-old British clothing retailer which has dressed Winston Churchill and the Queen Mother, collapsed into administration, jeopardising 250 jobs.
Meanwhile, the ONS said average earnings increased by 1.1% in the year to February, down by 0.2 percentage points from the previous month to the lowest since the summer of 2010.
Average weekly pay in private firms is £459, compared with £477 in the public sector.
There were 1.4 million working days lost through strikes in the year to February, the highest total since 2002, largely as a result of last November's walkout by public sector workers in the row over pensions.
what do you think?
Graet news...........the Coalition is working !!!!! Well done Mr cameron !!!! Keep it coming a smaller state & lower taxes please....oh happy Days !!
This is just number-crunching. Thousands of people fail to register unemployed while more who are forced onto 'workfare' schemes (ie. working for nothing) are not counted. Also a considerable amount of these figures only find low-paid, insecure part-time work.
The Coalition is destroying the UK
grant are you really as gullible as you seem to be oh and grant guess what i was talking to elvis the other day as i walked round the moon
funny how you always see things negatively, do you think this is why your life is negative?
Granny tax, pie tax, house improvement tax, help the rich tax benefits, of yes the coalition is working alright !
working better than liebour & that's a fact
well said john Henderson
Mr Grant Berry you are an idiot
Jon Good-self........... you are a scrounger & a racist
Gary Djuncleabe Kelly
Take into consideration all those they have on training schemes through the DWP and then do the maths. It has not gone down in bodies only numbers as when you are on a scheme through them you are not classed as unemployed due to the fact you are not active and looking for work. Yet more Government lies just to make them look like they are doing something good.
Where is the help for the older generation who are out of work?
well that's the BBC's phone in's stuffed they were expecting the figures to rise this morning and couldn't hide their glee
Utter tosh! Anyone can jiggle figures to make them read whatever they want others to see
I work for the company contracted to supply data to the ONS, and I can assure you all that the same criteria is used every month - nothing is "jiggled". (By the way, the ONS is non-political!)
It is not jiggled but total lies
All statistics can be manipulated to read whatever figure you want.
There's no use talking to idiots like this Angelique. They don't understand how the ONS works, don't understand statistics, so just put there cynical hype on the numbers to match their cynical minds
wonder how different the figures would be without this bribe for a job scheme?? AS it also says the jobseekers allowance peole are UP 3,600 . plenty of tory spin going on here me thinks.
There have been 3 million unemployed in Great Britain since, at least, 1980. I know this because I've been reading about it every single day for ... 11,680 days. People spend their entire lives working, have all their money taken away in taxes, lose all their money caring for their parents and are surrounded by people with big, rich cars. Obviously, eventually, the entire system is going to be ... changed. There is something in legends called, "The wine press of the fury of the wrath of God." That should sort a lot of this garbage out.
tHE ons ARE TOTALLY LIARS. They lie about inflation and employment. This government has an horrific treasury, ministers Prime Minister, Chancellor, Bank of England manager. Exactly the same as Blair and Brown and Milliband and Balls
been drinking pal?
It must be understood that there are millions of economically inactive people who have not been included in these figures, for political expediency - the ONS doesn't take in everybody in their calculations. The private sector isn't hiring at a rate to concur with these statistics. There is a whole generation of disaffected young people who are lost and, their prospects of "full time" work are diminishing - not increasing. Women and older people can't find full time work and employers are reluctant to offer full time positions because of the uncertainty in Brittan's shrinking economy - hence the rise in part-time employment. We have no viable growth to facilitate employment - all we have is inflation! In several weeks time School and University leavers will only add to the burgeoning number of unemployed.
The rate would be further down if we wasn't swamped with immigrants! No english whites working in the centre of London, lot's and lot's of easten europeans complaining about all the Africans taking their jobs!!!!!!! Nobody ever mentions the thousands coming every year taking all the jobs and social housing, school places doctors etc, etc. Wake up and smell the coffee brits, you don't know the half
What it actually means is that more of the old (great grandparents in the church yards) British families have had enough and emigrated and some of the Eastern Europeans have made their 'pile' and gone home as they said they would!
more ppl on jobseekers yet unemployment is falling... makes sense. from what i see this is mega economic depression.
bet your a right laff to have a drink with !
Ha ha ha!
ho ho ho
are the youngster who do work for there un employment money,but not guaranteed a job afterwards included in the figures,another manipulated figure,ready for the up coming elections.We all have to look closely around us,and see what we really think is the truth,are there more people in work or more doing nothing.
Hardly a figure to be proud of!
How many people don't count because: 1. They have retired 2. They have left the UK to try to find work elsewhere 3. They're on some government training scheme 4. They've transferred to a different benefit 5. They're in jail 6. They're ineligible for benefits
thats always been the case
yes correct i would say its more like 5 million with no work
Dont work it's not worth it just have kids you seem to be alot better off
Why work you end up worse off