UK jobless rate falls to 7.7% as part-time work soars

Figures shows number of unemployed fell to 2.49m in the three months to July


The number of unemployed people in the UK fell to 2.49 million in the three months to July, driving the unemployment rate to 7.7 per cent from 7.8 per cent.

Figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed unemployment

fell by 24,000 during the quarter, but the number of part-time workers has surged to a record high.

The rate has taken on new significance because it is tied to the Bank of England governor Mark Carney’s new forward guidance policy.

The bank has said it will not consider raising rates from their record low until the unemployment rate falls to 7 per cent — which it forecasts will take around three years — barring a spike in inflation.

The so-called claimant count — the number claiming jobseeker’s allowance — fell in August by 32,600 from July to 1.4 million.