As the numbers claiming jobseekers’ allowance fell by 32,300 to 1.59m in February, Gordon Brown, prime minister, said unemployment had fallen “as a result of the action that we have taken”. However, the number of people classed as economically inactive shot up by 149,000 to a record level of 8.16m, largely driven by an increase in students as young people took refuge in education instead of seeking jobs.So basically, Gordon Brown is now employing soviet style reporting, along his soviet style policies. The new campaign from the conservatives is making quite some points:
The unemployment rate, down 0.1 percentage point at 7.8 per cent of the workforce, compared with 9.9 per cent in the eurozone and 9.7 per cent in the US.
The Conservatives said that hidden unemployment was rising and warned of a “jobless recovery” under Labour.
The employment statistics showed the NHS had added another 20,000 people to its workforce in the final quarter of last year in spite of facing a real-terms freeze in its budget for frontline care from next year.
Compared with a year ago, the NHS is employing 62,000 more people. Its 1.62m headcount is at an all-time high.
Alan Downey, head of public sector business at the consultant KPMG, said the NHS numbers were “genuinely quite shocking” given the public spending squeeze to come. “They are clearly not living in the real world,” he said. The rise in the NHS workforce comes despite a report from McKinsey, the management consultants, to the department of health last autumn suggesting that the NHS in England may need to shed 10 per cent of its workforce, or about 130,000 jobs over the next five years.
Mr Downey said his impression for most of the past year was that the health service “has been sleepwalking into a crisis”.
Gordon Brown: unemployment has fallen “as a result of the action that we have taken”
This is not very new, but I had saved it hoping to post about it as soon as I get a moment, and here we are, two weeks later... Anyway, here's a quote from the FT: