UK Jobless Claims Rise Less Than Expected in September Print E-mail

LONDON (Reuters) – 14 October 2009

The number of Britons claiming jobless benefit rose by 20,800 in September, less than expected and the smallest rise since May 2008, official data showed on Wednesday.

The Office for National Statistics said that took the claimant count rate to 5 percent from 4.9 in August, its highest since September 1997.

The number of people without a job on the wider ILO measure of unemployment rose by 88,000 to 2.469 million in the three months to August, leaving the jobless rate at 7.9 percent and below expectations for a reading of 8.0 percent.

The figures show that while unemployment is still rising in Britain, the rates of monthly increase are easing, in a sign that the labour market may not be as hard hit by recession as some had feared.

The economy is starting to show signs of recovery after a year-long recession.

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