– Mark Hoban, Employment Minister
It's a credit to businesses that the private sector is employing one and a quarter million more people than when this Government took office, helping us compete in the global race.
Today's figures show that, against a difficult economic backdrop, we're helping people to move off benefits and into work.
There are still tough challenges ahead which is why we're working hard to give jobseekers all the help and support they need to realise their aspiration of finding a job.
Unemployment increased by 7,000 between November and January to 2.52 million, official figures have revealed. But the number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance last month fell by 1,500 to 1.54 million.