Effective and immediate action is needed to "tackle the youth unemployment crisis", a trade union warned after George Osborne's Autumn Statement.
TUC General Secretary Frances O’Grady said: “Almost a million young people are currently looking for work and will have been hoping for much more than the Chancellor offered them today.
“While it’s good news that employers are to be encouraged to provide more apprenticeships and that they won’t have to pay national insurance contributions for some young people in the future, effective and immediate action is needed to tackle the youth unemployment crisis.
“Unfortunately all the government has to offer is new measures to make young people work for free, when what is really needed is a job guarantee."
We have always advocated the dual approach of tackling the deficit and driving growth – the OBR forecasts confirm it is working. Let’s stick with what works.
The pressure on the high street has been recognised; the 2% cap on business rates and discount for very small businesses are positive, as is the reoccupation relief.
Abolishing a jobs tax on employing young people under 21 will make a real difference and help tackle the scourge of youth unemployment.
But it was a missed opportunity not to support our hard-pressed energy intensive businesses which are also struggling with rising costs, and the package on housing supply could have been more ambitious.
Today Chancellor George Osborne revealed his Autumn Statement but what does the statement mean for you?Read the full story ›
Economic growth this year and next is predicted to be higher than previously forecast, but then hits a plateau.
A word cloud showing how Twitter reacted to the measures announced in the Chancellor's Autumn Statement has been published by the business advisory service Deloitte UK.
The firm used a social media monitoring tool to trawl tweets using a number of economic and finance-related phrases.
It appears that the issues of tax, business and rates were the most tweeted terms.
- Growth forecasts are "significantly up" in the largest improvement at any Budget or Autumn Statement for 14 years, with UK growing faster than any other major economy.
- The state pension will rise by £2.95 a week from next April. People now in their 40s will receive a state pension at 68. Those in their 30s will be 69.
- Financial resources will be provided to fund expansion of free school meals to all school children in reception, year one and year two.
- The fuel duty rise for next year has been cancelled.
- Plans to increase train fares by 1% above inflation has been cancelled.