Sunday, October 12, 2008

Fun with U

by the Sandwichman

Alan Clarke, economist from the bank BNP Paribas, said the number of those claiming unemployment benefit was due to break the one million mark by the end of next month at the latest, with up to two million looking for work by December: he is forecasting unemployment to hit 7 per cent by the middle of next year and carry on rising until 2010.

Reading the above paragraph, from the Guardian, leaves the false impression that unemployment in the UK will double between next month and Christmas. Hogwash. "Those claiming unemployment benefit" and those "looking for work" are two different categories. The August figure for benefit claimants in the UK is 904,000. For ILO-defined unemployment ("those looking for work"), the number was 1.72 million.

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