Unemployment has hit a 17-year high of 8.4 per cent, finds data.
Unemployment has hit a 17-year high of 8.4 per cent, finds official data.
Figures from the Office for National Statistics have the unemployed count at 2.68 million, a rise of some 118,000 on the quarter to November.
With the impact of the global recession and continued economic and financial market uncertainty in the Euro area, indications are that the number of those seeking employment will continue to rise, while both permanent and temporary vacancies decline.
The Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) forecasts that the number of people in work in the UK will fall by 120,000 in 2012 despite a continued ‘productivity pause’ and further real pay squeeze, with unemployment rising to 2.85 million and an annual rate of economic growth remaining below 2 per cent until 2014.
Charles Levy, senior economist at The Work Foundation says, ‘Workers are facing the toughest labour market since the start of the recession. The young (16-24) and older (50-64) workers have bore the brunt of increased unemployment. Those in work are also continuing to feel the squeeze as the economy substituted full-time work for part-time, permanent employment for temporary positions and employee jobs for often more precarious self-employment.
‘This picture will only improve if we return to strong quarter on quarter employment growth.’
Andy Dallas, associate director at recruitment consultancy Robert Half UK says that the private sector jobs market is still showing signs of buoyancy, but the numbers are being hampered by poor public sector results.
He adds, ‘We are continuing to see strong hiring levels across markets such as financial services and within departments, including finance and accountancy, indicating that there are still plenty of opportunities available.’