By Marcus Leach
Official figures released today (Wednesday) have revealed that the number of people out of work fell by 37,000 between September and November.
The Office for National Statistics' (ONS) data shows that the number of people out of work is now down to 2.49 million. The total is the lowest since the March-to-May period in 2011.
The ONS also said that the number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance fell by 12,000 to 1.56 million in December, the lowest figure since June 2011.
The number of people in work rose to another record of 29.7 million in the three months to November.
“Payrolls in the UK have risen to a record level in the three months between September and November, while the employment rate has hit the highest level since 2009. So some good news remains," Jeremy Cook, chief economist at foreign exchange company, World First, said.
“However, while this had led to a dip in the unemployment rate, those in work are seeing the rate of pay increases fall (1.5% vs 1.8% previously) against an inflation rate that is likely to push over the 3% level next month. Unfortunately this will limit any impact that an improving jobs market will have on growth in the UK, as confidence remains poor.
“The Bank of England minutes were slightly more hawkish than some had expected. Although the key line that the ‘pound may exceed the level needed for rebalancing of UK’, emphasised the bank’s desire for a weaker pound.
“So, although the data may suggest that inflation is rising, the paucity of growth in 2013 alongside a strong currency will probably see other members of the MPC joining David Miles in voting for more QE at the February meeting."
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