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Shock as unemployment rises at fastest pace in five years

Shock as unemployment rises at fastest pace in five years

However, Norway believes that the marginal change is well within the margin of error.

In total, there were 1.47 million unemployed people, 46,000 more than for the three months to September but it's 123,000 fewer than recorded previous year. "This change is within the LFS error margin".

There were 76,000 people out of work between October and December - 14,000 more than the previous quarter and 9,000 more than a year ago. The entire increase was among those aged above 24.

The UK jobless rate increased in the fourth quarter, data from the Office for National Statistics showed Wednesday.

The jobless rate came in at 4.1 percent in December, up 0.1 percentage point from September.

The rate for December indicates average of November to January period and September reflects August to October period.

Average earnings including and excluding bonuses grew 2.5% each on a yearly basis in three months ended December.

Job vacancies were up by 24,000 to a record 823,000.

Despite the headline rise in unemployment, the figures will likely give support to the Bank of England's desire to raise interest rates in May, given the signs of inflationary pressure amid a still strong labour market. The squeeze on United Kingdom households continues with a lethal cocktail of rising prices, paltry pay growth and record low interest rates.

UK-wide, the quarterly increase in unemployment was 0.1 per cent.

"It's important to remember these figures simply look at the number of people in work, and aren't a measure of migration".

The ONS said the number of European Union nationals working in Britain rose by an annual 4.5 percent over the fourth quarter, the smallest increase since the third quarter of 2013.

Employment Minister Alok Sharma said: "High employment rates are a reliable feature of today's economy - and this is an incredible achievement".

"Today's figures show that this Government is building a fairer economy that supports people from all backgrounds to get into work". They are not on them by choice. "Her feeble response to the Taylor Review means zero-hours workers will remain at the beck and call of bad bosses".

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