UK unemployment total reaches 2.5 million


The number of jobless people in the UK has risen due to the cuts made to public sector roles.

The level of unemployment has grown by thousands.

UK unemployment increased by 35,000 in the three months leading up to October causing the total number of jobless Britons to rise to 2.5 million, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The figures mark the first rise in unemployment in the last six months and were caused by the 33,000 public sector job losses outlined in the government’s Spending Review revealed in October. The unemployment rate now stands at 7.9%.

The government hopes that the losses will be recouped by job creation within the private sector.

However, David Birne, insolvency practitioner at accountants HW Fisher said this view is out of touch with the current private sector business market: “For the UK’s businesses and their employees, 2011 is shaping up to be harsher than any of the past three years”.

He added: “This time next year we expect unemployment to be considerably higher than it is at present, as many more of Britain’s companies go to the wall. We deal with companies of every size and from every sector day in, day out and for a large chunk of them things are looking very bleak indeed”.

However, the government stated that austerity measures, such as the job cuts in the public sector, are exactly what the UK needs to strengthen its ailing economy.

Employment Minister Chris Grayling said: “It’s a long road towards restoring sustainable economic strength in this country. You only get the private sector creating jobs if they have confidence in the direction of the economy, and they have confidence that the country will be stable economically”.