A record number of people are in work after another fall in unemployment and a further dip in the numbers claiming jobseeker's allowance, new figures showed today.

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Almost 30 million adults were in a job in the quarter to last November, up by more than half a million on the previous year.

The figure, giving an employment rate of 71pc, is the highest since records began in 1971.

Unemployment fell by 37,000 in the latest quarter to just under 2.5 million, the lowest since spring 2011.

It was the 10th consecutive fall and was coupled with another cut in the number of people claiming jobseeker's allowance, which was down by 12,100 last month to 1.56 million, the lowest since June 2011.

The number of people classed as economically inactive, including those looking after a relative or who have given up looking for a job, fell by 13,000 to just over nine million.

Part-time employment fell by 23,000, but this was offset by a 113,000 increase in the numbers employed full-time in the three months to November.

Data from the Office for National Statistics also showed a 26,000 increase in the number of women out of work for up to six months, to reach 571,000, which may reflect changes to the benefits system resulting in more single mothers looking for work.

The number of job vacancies in the economy increased by 10,000 to almost half a million at the end of last year, the highest number for four years.

Other figures revealed that the number of self-employed workers has increased by 7,000 to 4.2 million, while unpaid family workers fell by 1,000 to 111,000.

Long-term unemployment has also fallen, down by 10,000 for those out of work for more than two years, to 434,000, and by 5,000 for people unemployed for at least a year, to 892,000.

But the number of 16 to 24-year-olds out of work increased by 1,000 to 957,000, the first rise since last summer, although youth employment showed an increase of 12,000 as more students seek work.

Meanwhile, average earnings increased by 1.5% in the year to November, down by 0.3% on the previous month.

Average total pay in Britain was £472 a week at the end of last year.

6 comments

  • This is a really wishy washy story. Unemployment in the East has RISEN. It has risen across Norfolk. Why no mention of this?

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    Jeffrey Osborne

    Wednesday, January 23, 2013

  • "In the last quarter" >September to December not now. Try saying the same thing, EDP, in April to the 17,000 plus people who have been made redundant in the last 6 weeks. You are correct grassychops, the Slave Centre Plus always massages the figures. There is never any true figure for unemployment, and they always talk down to you as if the unemployed are nothing.

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    "V"

    Wednesday, January 23, 2013

  • omnishambles - Are you sure your figures are correct? The East has the highest number of people in work at 74.9% and unemployment is at 6.7%, 1% lower than the national average according to the data on the Office of National Statistics web site.

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    BG

    Wednesday, January 23, 2013

  • This figure is meaningless as it does n iot include those who left the job centre in disgust, those who have gone self employed, eking survival I call it and those who are in education with no prospect of a job in future. There are thousands of youngsters who are desperate for apprenticeships and many have lost all hope of getting one.

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    ingo wagenknecht

    Wednesday, January 23, 2013

  • Would appear Joseph Watts is leaving the EDP for the Evening Standard. That was short and sweet. Wonder who we will get next! Andrew Marr will be on light duties for the foreseeable future. I wonder if he will be interested.

    Report this comment

    BG

    Wednesday, January 23, 2013

  • What about the people out of work but with savings? Finding myself out of work I went to sign on, not to receive benefits but just to keep the numbers right - not allowed. Unemployed is simply the people claiming and not a true picture.

    Report this comment

    grassychops

    Wednesday, January 23, 2013

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