Britain's Jobless Rate Rises, to 4.4%, for First Time in 2 Years

22 February, 2018, 00:58 | Author: Martin Tyler
  • Shock as unemployment rises at fastest pace in five years

Unemployment increased by 46,000 between October and December to 1.47 million, official figures show.

However, Norway believes that the marginal change is well within the margin of error.

Quarterly figures from the ONS showed the number of European Union nationals working in Britain rose by an annual 4.5 percent over the fourth quarter, the smallest increase since the third quarter of 2013.

However, the number of people in work grew by less than expected, rising by 88,000, about half the consensus forecast in a Reuters poll of economists. Statisticians said the reason why both employment and unemployment increased at the same time was that the number of people deemed to be inactive declined. They may also fuel speculation that the Bank of England could raise interest rates again as early as May after policy makers said the Brexit vote had lowered the pace the economy can grow without fanning inflation.

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Officials from the Bank of England may take encouragement from pay increasing 2.8 percent on the year in December alone.

The ONS attributed the rise in unemployment to a fall in the number of people who are neither working nor looking for a job.

Unemployment has increased by the biggest amount in nearly five years, while earnings continue to grow more slowly than prices, new figures reveal.

Average weekly earnings excluding bonuses rose 2.5 percent from a year earlier, the most since December 2016, the Office for National Statistics said on Wednesday.

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The UK's unemployment level has unexpectedly risen by the biggest amount in nearly five years, official figures show.

This increase remained below inflation. With only two months left in the 2017/18 financial year, cumulative borrowing now stands at 37.7 billion pounds, down 16 percent on the same point a year ago.

"Rising employment this past year was largely driven by United Kingdom nationals".

"While firms are reporting some upward pressure on pay settlements amid a very tight labour market, more subdued economic conditions together with high upfront business costs are likely to limit the extent to which wages are likely to rise", said Suren Thiru of the British Chambers of Commerce.

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