Unemployment jumps to 7.9% as rise in the number of young people out of work takes figure 'dangerously close' to a million
- Data from the ONS reveals UK has jobless rate of 7.9 per cent
- 900,000 people have been out of work for more than a year
- Experts warn figures show recovery is slower than expected
- Think-tank says: 'The light at the end of the tunnel remains rather dim'
The total is the worst since last summer, giving the UK a jobless rate of 7.9 per cent, with 979,000 16 to 25-year-olds seeking work.
Martina Milburn, chief executive of The Prince's Trust, said: 'Youth unemployment is still dangerously close to a million.
'Thousands of these young people are long-term unemployed, often facing further challenges such as poverty and homelessness. We must act now to support these young people into work and give them the chance of a better future.'
Today's data from the Office for National Statistics revealed that 900,000 people have been out of work for more than a year, an 8,000 increase on the three months to November, while the number of unemployed 16 to 24-year-olds rose by 20,000.
There was a 7,000 fall in Jobseeker's Allowance claimants last month, to 1.53 million.
Meanwhile, the rise in average earnings continued to lag behind inflation, with total pay increasing by just 0.8 per cent in the year to February, down by 0.4 per cent on the previous month.
Statisticians said it was the lowest growth rate since the end of 2009, while the 1 per cent rise in regular pay, which excludes bonuses, was the lowest since records began in 2001.
The number of people classed as economically inactive, including students, people on long-term sick leave or those who have given up looking for work, fell by 57,000 to 8.95 million.
There has been a 62,000 fall in the number of people in part-time jobs, to just over eight million, with a 60,000 increase in full-time employment, to 21.6 million.
Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Liam Byrne said: 'Three years on it's now clear the Government's plan is failing, and failing badly. Not only are more people unemployed than at the election, it's soaring up.
'Yet to add insult to injury this Government is slashing tax credits and child benefit but giving millionaires a tax cut. Families are £891 worse off because of tax and benefit changes and pay packets are now a whopping £1,700 smaller than at the last election. People have to work almost an extra month and a half to make what they did in 2010. Working people are going backwards.
'With the IMF warning George Osborne to change course and unemployment getting worse, it's clear the time has come for a fresh approach.'
'Despite the fairly large rise in unemployment, the number of those in jobs has remained almost unchanged.
'The level of inactivity fell by 57,000 in the three months to February as more people returned to the workforce, and this contributed to the increase in unemployment. Although the UK labour market remains surprisingly robust, overall the outlook is uncertain.
'It is realistic to expect further increases in the jobless total if the private sector is able to only absorb some of the expected reductions in public sector employment. In our recent forecast, we predicted that unemployment would increase to 2.6 million in 2014.'
Nigel Meager, director of the Institute for Employment Studies, said: 'Today’s data from the Office of National Statistics show that the long-awaited recovery in the UK labour market may still be some way off.
'Nearly all the headline indicators recorded little change; the recent employment growth seems to have fizzled out, and there is virtually no change in total hours worked in the economy, or in new vacancies recorded by employers.
'Much recent commentary has focused on the apparent resilience of the UK labour market, and the strong performance in total employment.
'It’s worth stressing though that the employment rate at 71 per cent is still below its pre-recession level, and the recent jobs growth has been at the expense of a poor productivity performance, which may harm the UK’s longer-term growth prospects.
'Recent employment growth has relied heavily on under-employed part-timers, and precarious self-employment.
'Looking beyond these small month-to-month movements in the official statistics, the overall picture remains one of stagnation.
'Unemployment has been stuck at around 2.5 million for nearly four years, a million higher than pre-recession levels, and the employment rate has been stuck in the 70-71 per cent range for a similar period.
'The stark fact is that although the labour market wasn’t hit as badly this time round as in previous recessions, it has taken much longer to recover, and the light at the end of the tunnel remains rather dim.'
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2310394/Unemployment-increases-70-000-2-56million-rise-young-people-work.html#ixzz2QlA89Ci9
NWN: So the cuts in welfare will drive people back into work ?
With even more massive immigration on the horizon, and no plans by this Government to create jobs. The scene is set for strife on our streets in the future.
And we nationalists will do what exactly to engage the electorate ? And put across nationalist policies against the bankers austerity policies ?
Quite a number of even high ranking nationalists can't even understand basic economic policies. They would sooner bang on about muslims !