• Unemployment in the three months to June rose by 38,000; employment increased by 25,000

Commenting on the labour market statistics published today by the ONS, David Kern, Chief Economist at the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC), said:  

“The figures reveal a worrying rise in unemployment and a significant increase in the claimant count. There is a clear slowdown in the number of jobs being created, which has halved since the previous quarter. One of the most concerning features is the sharp increase in the number of people working part-time because they could not find a full-time job, at the highest level since comparable records began in 1992. Though there is a small increase in earnings growth, the scale of the rise is modest.

“Given the government’s programme to reduce the deficit, the figures are not altogether surprising. We expect unemployment to increase by 150,000 over the next year or so, peaking at around 2.6m. The private sector is willing and able to create new jobs, but faced with a tough environment, businesses need to be given the right conditions to take on more staff. The government must reduce the burden of red tape on businesses, and ensure we have a skills system that delivers the right candidates for those wanting to grow their workforce.”

In a report launched today, the (BCC) revealed that micro businesses (those with fewer than ten employees) want to grow, but find it difficult to recruit staff for the job. In a survey of over 2,000 micro businesses, over half (55%) are looking to increase the number of staff they employ. However, one in two (50%) find it difficult to recruit the right people.  


Notes to editors:

The British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) is the national voice of local business.

The BCC sits at the heart of a powerful nationwide network of Accredited Chambers of Commerce, serving over 100,000 businesses across the UK, which employ over five million people.

Media contacts:

Liz Larvin
Tel: 020 7654 5813 / 07825746812
Email: l.larvin@britishchambers.org.uk

Lisa Morrison
Tel: 020 7654 5812 / 07717682221
Email: l.morrison@britishchambers.org.uk