INDUSTRY NEWS

Positive jobs news from ONS

Unemployment fell again in January, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

Employment figures now stand at almost 29.4 million and the number of people claiming Jobseekers allowance has fallen for 16 successive years.

Employment minister Stephen Timms said: "These figures show we continue to have a strong and stable labour market with both record numbers in employment and the lowest claimant count for 32 years."

The ONS data revealed there is still a high number of vacancies (677,400) and redundancies are at record low levels.

"With the right help and support more people are able to take up jobs and provide for themselves and their families where before this didn’t seem an option," he went on.

The Bank of England watches the jobs market carefully as it is an indicator of economic prosperity, with the news likely to have a key bearing on the interest rate.

Recent speculation, in light of the employment indicators and news on rising inflation, suggest that rate cuts may be delayed.

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