The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show unemployment has risen to 3.8% in the last three months, up from 3.7%, while the number of job vacancies has fallen by 47,000 over the quarter – the ninth consecutive month they’ve dropped. Roughly 220,000 more people were looking for work between December and February than in the three months prior.
Chancellor Jeremy Hunt said:
“While unemployment remains close to historic lows, rising prices continue to eat into pay cheques which is why halving inflation this year is one of our top economic priorities.”
These figures go up to February; Corporation Tax only went up at the start of this month. While CFOs may claim their confidence in business is returning, this isn’t quite bearing out in the data. According to the ONS, “survey respondents continue to cite economic pressures as a factor in holding back on recruitment”. Vacancies are dropping quickly, and that’s before the tax rises have bitten…