Employment up as jobless totals fall

2004

Unemployment in the UK fell by 29,000 to 1,460,000 in the three months to November, according to the latest official figures, reducing the unemployment rate by 0.1 per cent to 4.9 per cent.

The figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) also show that the number of people claiming unemployment benefit during December fell by 8,300 to 908,200 – their lowest level in almost 30 years.

The number of people in employment grew by 41,000 over the quarter to November to 28.15 million with a higher number of women in work than ever before – some 12.94 million.

But the figures also show that that jobs are still disappearing in the manufacturing sector. Almost 30,000 jobs went in electrical and optical equipment manufacture and 23,000 were lost in textiles, leather and clothing

The ONS added that average earnings rose 3.5 per cent in the year to November, slightly down on October’s figure of 3.6 per cent.

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