Record numbers in work

Official figures reveal unemployment fell by 37,000 between September and November to 2.49 million.

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'No room for complacency' despite unemployment fall

Any fall must be welcome but progress is still painfully slow for the 2.49 million people still desperately looking for a job.

The number of high street names going into liquidation shows there is no room for complacency. And only yesterday the Government announced more than 5,000 cuts to Army personnel.

We know that many thousands of public sector workers' jobs are under threat as council budget cuts mean that elderly care centres, nurseries, swimming pools and other valued services face the axe.

– Unison General Secretary, Dave Prentis

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Employment rate 'growing faster than any G7 country'

Employment Minister Mark Hoban pointed out that the UK employment rate was growing at almost double the rate of the US, and faster than any other G7 country. He added:

"These are very positive figures showing employment rising for 15 months and despite difficult economic circumstances, unemployment is lower than when this Government took office.

"But we are not complacent, and will continue making sure we give jobseekers the support and training they need to achieve their goal of returning to work."

Unemployment fell by 37,000 in the latest quarter to just under 2.5 million
Unemployment fell by 37,000 in the latest quarter to just under 2.5 million Credit: Press Association

Vince Cable: McDonald's highly-skilled workforce

A highly-skilled workforce is an important part of any growing business. That's why I am pleased to see how McDonald's is providing training and apprenticeships in a range of skills.

McDonald's is also to be applauded for helping adult employees get qualifications in maths and English. Poor literacy and numeracy skills can hold people back in the workplace, which is why the Government has doubled the funding for these core subjects.

– Vince Cable, Business Secretary

The announcement comes on the day figures show a record number of people are in work. Despite the numbers, Our Consumer Editor looks at weather Britain's job culture is still mired in insecurity.

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Rise in the number of women out of work

  • Unemployment fell by 37,000 in the latest quarter to just under 2.5 million, the lowest since spring 2011
  • It was the 10th consecutive fall and was coupled with another cut in the number of people claiming jobseeker's allowance
  • Figures show a 26,000 increase in the number of women out of work for up to six months, to reach 571,000, which may reflect changes to the benefits system

Record number of people in work in the UK

A record number of people are in work after another fall in unemployment and a further dip in the numbers claiming jobseeker's allowance. Almost 30 million adults were in a job in the quarter to last November, up by more than half a million on the previous year.

Average earnings increased by 1.5% in the year to November, 0.3% down on the previous month. Read the figures in full on the state of the UK's labour market here from the Office for National Statistics.

The figure, giving an employment rate of 71%, is the highest since records began in 1971
The figure, giving an employment rate of 71%, is the highest since records began in 1971 Credit: Press Association
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