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Mark Takes the Opportunity of a Fortuitous but Hardly Earth Shattering "rise in Numbers in Employment" Stat to Remind the Unemployed

Posted on the 15 August 2013 by Markwadsworth @Mark_Wadsworth
that their being unemployed is all their fault ... but subtly, of course ...
Mark Hoban, the minister for employment, said the figures painted a "positive picture of the UK labor market."
He added: "There are now more jobs available than at any time since the end of 2008, and more hours being worked than ever before – which shows that there are opportunities out there for people who want to work and get on in life."
But some people, who perhaps understand things slightly better than Mark - despite him holding the office he holds, would beg to differ with his analysis.
The jobless rate as measured by the labor force survey stood at 7.8% in the three months ending in June, unchanged on the quarter to May.
That may seem at odds with recent reports of the economy going like the clappers but it isn't.
For one thing, an increase in the working age population means that the UK has to create a lot of jobs simply to stand still. 
Employment grew by 69,000 over the quarter but unemployment fell by just 4,000. The number of people employed in Britain has almost recovered to the level at which it stood before the deep recession of 2008-09, but the employment rate is 1.4 percentage points lower at 71.5%. 
That's because the number of people aged between 16 and 64 has increased by 673,000 in the past five years.

The second reason the unemployment rate is unlikely to fall sharply is that the UK is a low-productivity economy in which companies will respond to any pickup in demand by making existing employees do more. There are plenty of part-time workers – 1.4 million currently – who would like full-time employment if it was available. 
It will take a prolonged period of economic growth for these under-employed workers to be used to their full capacity, and only then will the rate of new hiring really pick up.

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