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managing partner at Flame Health comments on the latest labour market statistics

Scott Liversidge, managing partner at Flame Health, the specialist healthcare recruitment consultancy, comments on the latest labour market statistics

“Although the unemployment rate remains steady, the number of unemployed has risen once again to a seven year high, this is not a good sign in terms of the UK’s recovery. The 226,000 jobs created in the private sector is a positive indicator, although this is cancelled out by the 270,000 jobs which have disappeared in the public sector. One thing that we are seeing is that companies are in fact hiring, there is just a skills gap hindering their growth. The Chancellor in his Budget next week will need to address this problem and ensure that clear and achievable ambitions for growth are set out. George Osborne has a lot of work to do in order to create a coherent strategy to combat the UK’s spiralling unemployment.”



The CBI today (Wednesday) commented on the latest official employment data, showing unemployment rose by 28,000 to 2.67 million in the three months to January. At the same time, employment also rose. In the fourth quarter of 2011, numbers of private sector jobs increased by 45,000.

Neil Carberry, CBI Director for Employment policy, said:

"While unemployment has risen again, thankfully the pace of increase has continued to slow, as we have seen in previous months.

“Overall employment remained broadly flat over the past three months, but it’s encouraging that private sector jobs rose in the last quarter of 2011. During that period, private sector jobs more than compensated for the losses in the public sector.

“Growth in private sector jobs has also been driven by rising numbers of employees, rather than the self-employed, which suggests that firms are beginning to feel more confident about taking on new staff.

"However, with the recovery at a critical stage, it's vital that the Chancellor uses next week's Budget to unlock business investment, as only sustainable private sector growth will help tackle unemployment."


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