UK employment rose to its highest level since
records began in 1971 in the three months to October.
The number of people in work rose by 40,000 to
29.6m in the three months to October, the Office for National Statistics
[pdf] today. However, that was the slowest rise since January, confirming that
the recent jobs boom is slowing.
UK unemployment was 2.51m, down 82,000 on
the previous quarter but almost unchanged on the three months to September. The
quarterly fall was the biggest dip in unemployment since 2001.
The unemployment rate was 7.8%, down 0.2
percentage points from the previous three months.
The Office for National Statistics also said that
the number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance fell 3,000 to 1.58 million
Employment in the public sector fell for the 12th
straight month, dropping 24,000 to 5.7m, which was offset by a 65,000 rise in
private sector employment to 23.8m.
Neil Carberry, CBI director for Employment
and Skills, said: "As we’ve seen throughout 2012,
people are continuing to find work despite the lacklustre economy. The private
sector has continued to generate jobs, employment is at record levels, and three
thousand fewer people were claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance between August and
"But dig a little deeper and a huge challenge remains. Private sector jobs
growth has tapered off sharply, while the three months to October saw the lowest
number of people finding work since the turn of the year. It is deeply troubling
that more than a third of unemployed people have now been out of work for more
than a year.
"Although 72,000 fewer young people were out of work in three months to
October, a fifth of our young people are still unemployed. So we support the
Employment Minister’s decision today to extend the youth contract wage incentive
to all young people.
"In 2013 unemployment will continue to be a serious problem for everyone
in the UK, so there is clearly no room for complacency from the Government - - only real and immediate action on infrastructure, investment and exports will
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