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How the narrative of full employment Britain hides the real story | Larry Elliott

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If economy goes into tailspin, gap between areas with weak and strong labour markets would be exposed

The message from the government is clear. A booming labour market represents the silver lining to the dark cloud hanging over the economy. There are more job vacancies than there are people officially classified as out of work and firms are paying signing-on bonuses to attract staff. What’s more, as Boris Johnson said repeatedly at prime minister’s questions last week, an unemployment rate of 3.7% is the lowest since 1974.

No question, the labour market is in better shape now than ministers expected even six months ago. Back then there was concern that the end of the Treasury’s furlough scheme would lead to large numbers of firms going bust and a significant increase in unemployment.

Continue reading…If economy goes into tailspin, gap between areas with weak and strong labour markets would be exposed The message from the government is clear. A booming labour market represents the silver lining to the dark cloud hanging over the economy. There are more job vacancies than there are people officially classified as out of work and firms are paying signing-on bonuses to attract staff. What’s more, as Boris Johnson said repeatedly at prime minister’s questions last week, an unemployment rate of 3.7% is the lowest since 1974.No question, the labour market is in better shape now than ministers expected even six months ago. Back then there was concern that the end of the Treasury’s furlough scheme would lead to large numbers of firms going bust and a significant increase in unemployment. Continue reading…