Unemployment reaches highest level in six years

The number of unemployed people in the UK has reached its highest level in six years, hitting 1.7million in the three months to August 2006.

An additional 45,000 people were registered as unemployed from June to August, up 276,000 over the year, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS).

The number of people claiming unemployment benefits reached 962,000 in September, up 10,200 on August and up by 82,000 on the year.

The redundancy rate for the three months to August 2006 was 5.4% per 1,000 employees, down 0.4% over the quarter, according to ONS.

The average number of job vacancies for the three months to September 2006 was 608,100 – up 9,700 on the previous quarter but down 4,400 year-on-year. The sector showing the largest increase in job vacancies in the past quarter was finance & business services with 6,200 more jobs available.


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