UK unemployment rate remains unchanged at 7.9%

| February 16, 2011 | 0 Comments

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has today revealed UK unemployment rose in the three months to December.

The ONS said unemployment grew by 44,000 in the three month period to 2.49 million.

The latest figures means the unemployment rate is unchanged from last month at 7.9% – in line with forecasts.

In the meantime, the number of Britons claiming jobseeker’s allowance (JSA) rose in January, by 2,400 to 1.46 million – analysts had expected a fall of 3,000.

Meanwhile, the ONS also said unemployment among 16 to 24-year-olds grew to 965,000 in the three month period - the highest since records began more than 18 years ago.

Unemployment is expected to rise further as the Coalition Government’s tough austerity measures will see more than 300,000 public sector staff lose their jobs over the next four years.

Last week, the Confederation of British Industry (CBI) said unemployment will continue to rise, forecasting a jobless rate of 8.4% this year.

However, the National Institute for Economic and Social Research (NIESR) expects unemployment to rise to a rate of 8.7% in 2011.

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