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UK unemployment rises to 5.1%

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It has emerged that unemployment in the UK has hit 5.1%, this is being attributed to hiring slowing down, although the furlough scheme has helped to limit redundancies during the Covid-19 pandemic. Those hardest hit were 18 to 24-year-olds. 

The UK unemployment rate rose to 5.1 per cent in the three months to December which is a rise of 0.4 percentage points from the previous quarter. There were some signs of improvement however, the number of payroll employees increased in January and the Office for National Statistics have said that pay was growing in real terms in all sectors. 

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Nye Cominetti who is the senior economist at the Resolution Foundation has said:  “The renewed lockdown in January has had only a muted effect on employment, as firms have adapted, and the furlough scheme has kept people in their jobs”. 

Experts have argued that these figures only serve to underline the fact that the government need to extend support to be extended in order to reduce the risk of a further surge in job losses. Tej Parikh, chief economist at the Institute of Directors has said: “The government will need to provide ongoing help. The Budget next week needs to provide a bridge for businesses to begin the process of rescaling and rehiring”. 

Rishi Sunak has responded to this data by saying: ”Throughout the crisis, my focus has been on doing everything we can to protect jobs and livelihoods”. Many will be awaiting the Chancellor’s budget on March the 3rd eager to see how the economy will be structured for the upcoming year.  

This content was sourced from Unity News Network.

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