The headline unemployment rate now stands at 7.8%, according to latest official unemployment data (PDF format, 342.6K) (external website) published today (Wednesday 11 November 2009).
Today's unemployment data show the following:
- The headline unemployment rate (on the ILO definition) stood at 7.8% over the period July to September 2009. The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reports that this represents an increase of 0.1 percentage point when compared with the rate for the three months to June 2009.
- The ILO unemployment level was 2.46 million over the period July to September 2009, which the ONS reports is up 30,000 on the three months to June 2009, and up 629,000 on the same period a year ago.
These figures continue the trend suggested over recent months, that the rate of increase in unemployment appears to be slackening off.
The Guardian reports (external website) that:
The figures will raise hopes that the worst of the rise in unemployment in this recession is now past, although most labour market experts think the jobless total will continue to rise towards three million some time in 2010.
The TUC issued a warning yesterday (Tuesday 10 November 2009) that swingeing cuts to public spending expected in 2010 will serve to drive unemployment upwards (external website), in turn constraining the UK's ability to return to solid economic growth. TUC general secretary Brendan Barber said:
Unemployment is now increasing at a slower rate than many were predicting. [...] Cutting back on public spending would put thousands of workers at risk of permanent worklessness, risking a repeat of the enormous social and economic costs of the 1980s.