The Free Exchange blogg ved The Economist bryter ned arbeidsledighetstall for Storbritannia. Igjen er det de yngste og minst utdannede som lider mest. Ledigheten er nå 7,7% i Storbritannia (fortsatt langt fram til miserable 20,7% i Spania):
ONE of the few bright spots in the general gloom around the British economy has been the jobs figures. Today’s data seem like more of the same, at least at first glance. Unemployment fell by 88,000 in the three months to April, the biggest quarterly drop for more than a decade. The jobless rate slipped to 7.7%, which seems almost tolerable given the rates in other debt-ridden, housing-bust economies such as Spain (20.7%), Ireland (14.7%) and America (9.1%). And enough private-sector jobs (105,000) were created in the first quarter to more than make up for government layoffs (24,000). That pay growth is so hopelessly feeble, at just 1.8%, is almost a plus. Any sign of a wage response to high consumer-price inflation (currently 4.5%) might spook the Bank of England into raising interest rates.
But a closer look at the jobs data reveals signs of further slowdown in an already sluggish economy. The fall in unemployment was heavily concentrated in the 18-24 age range, which would be great news if it were matched by job gains. But only 12,000 of the 79,000 youngsters who «left» unemployment in the three months to April found work; the rest simply dropped out of the workforce—into full-time education or idleness.
The claimant-count measure of unemployment also suggests the jobs market has hit a soft spot. It rose by almost 20,000 in May alone, the biggest increase for almost two years, after a 17,000 rise in April. There is less focus these days on this gauge because it captures only those who are eligible for jobless benefits, a small subset of those who are without work. Yet it is more often a better guide to the trend in the jobs market than the more volatile headline measure of unemployment, based on a household survey. Tighter restrictions on welfare support for single parents since the end of 2008 have pushed more people onto the dole, swelling the number of claimants. But that change affects more women than men—and it was men who accounted for most of the rise in unemployment in May. The economy, it seems, is rather wobblier than the headline jobs figures suggest.
(Via Free exchange.)