A new year should symbolise a new start, but new unemployment figures announced show a rise of 118,000 people out of work, bringing the total up to 2.68 million, a 17 year high.
This shocking figure takes the unemployment rate up to 8.4 %, a 0.3% rise on the quarter and more than many analysts forecast.
Employment Minister, Chris Grayling said that the figures were much too high but the priority was to “bring them down as soon as possible”. Grayling attributes the rise in unemployment numbers to previously inactive people, “students who are now looking for a part time job and perhaps women bringing up children thinking they need to go back to work”.
Britain’s youth were the worst hit in the new unemployment figures with youth unemployment reaching 1.04 million making it 22.3% of all 16 – 24 year olds out of work. This figure is the highest since comparable records began in 1990.