Strong job figures point to economic growth
· In the three months to September 2013, the unemployment rate was 7.6%
· In the three months to September 2013, unemployment fell by 48,000 and employment increased by 177,000
· Youth unemployment (16-24) fell 9,000 in the three months to September, but was still high at 965,000, and the jobless rate was 21%
· The claimant count fell 41,700 between September and October 2013
Commenting on the labour market figures published today by the ONS, David Kern, Chief Economist at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) said:
“This is another set of positive figures, confirming the flexibility and resilience of the UK labour market, and point to continued economic growth over the next year. The fall in the jobless rate is clearly more rapid than the MPC initially predicted in August, but this should not be seen as a failure of the forward guidance policy. Following the surprise fall in inflation, there is also scope for interest rates to remain at their current low levels for an extended period.
“Youth and long-term unemployment remain areas of concern that must be addressed, but it is good to see that the figures are now moving in the right direction. The government must build on the progress made so far and support job creation, focusing in particular on more support for exporters and improving access to finance for growing businesses.”