View your shopping bag

Items: (0) £0.00
  • €
  • $
  • £


Mixed messages on unemployment

The unemployment rate for the three months to April 2010 was 7.9% which was an increase of 0.1%. There was an increase in the number unemployed of 23,000 to give a total of 2.47 million out of work. This is a bleak figure which looks set to become even bleaker. Particularly so, given the fact that there are 5.2 unemployed people per vacancy at the moment.

On the other side of the coin, the number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (also called the claimant count), actually fell by 30,900 between April and May to reach 1.48 million. This is the first time this measurement has fallen below 1.5 million since March 2009. This may be because more people are being put on training courses and some of those who are losing their jobs may not be eligible for Jobseeker’s Allowance.

Also, according to the ONS, the number of people who are economically inactive, which means that they are out of work but not seeking employment, actually increased by 29,000 during the three months to April. This means that the total of the economically inactive has now reached 8.19 million which is equivalent to 21.5% of the working population.

At the same time, there was a small increase of 5,000 in the numbers employed in the three months to April. But, the number of full-time workers fell by 56,000 over the quarter whilst the number of part-time workers increased by 61,000. The number of those working part-time because they cannot find a full-time job rose by 45,000 over the quarter, and now totals 1.08 million, which is the highest figure since comparable records began in 1992.

The employment situation is a mess and about to get worse. The government’s austerity cuts are already biting. Just yesterday, one of my friends lost her job in education, because “funding has been cut for next year” within the local authority. Of course, the more public sector workers lose their jobs the lower government spending will be on the surface. But then there are all the unemployment benefits which will have to be paid added to the loss of income tax and national insurance which the out-of-work will no longer be paying.

With growth figures being slashed, we are not going to be rescued by the private sector, especially as other governments, especially in Europe, are taking the same sort of austerity measures. If markets dwindle, employment will fall even further. I had a job application this morning from someone who has a “starred” First Class degree and is currently working as a waiter.  Your guess is as good as mine as to where it is all going to end.

Tags: , , ,
Posted in economic growth, Employment, government borrowing, government spending, Public Finances, unemployment

Comments are closed.