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UPDATE: Unemployment rate falls to 7.7%

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The UK unemployment rate fell 0.1% in the three months to July to 7.7%, according to the Office for National Statistics.
UPDATE: Unemployment rate falls to  7.7%

The jobless rate is down 0.4% from the same period last year. 

There were 2.49 million unemployed people aged 16 and over, down 24,000 from February to April 2013 and down 105,000 from a year earlier.

The unemployment level has become more signifcant after the Bank of England said in August  it would not raise the base rate of interest from 0.5% until unemployment falls to 7% or below.

Governor Mark Carney (pictured) said the 7% mark represents the point at which the BoE will “reassess” its interest rate policy.

However, last week the Trade Union Congress (TUC) claimed the unemployment rate “could be almost double” the headline figure of 2.5 million when groups such as the economically inactive are added.

As well as the 2.5 million official jobless figure, a further 2.26 million people want a job, but are not classified as unemployed, the report said.

Sterling has risen to a seven-month high against the dollar on today’s news.

It strengthened to $1.5824 against the dollar.

That represented the highest level in dollar terms since February. Sterling also rose to an eight-month high against the euro of €1.1925.

The rise was accompanied by a further jump in benchmark gilt yields, with ten-year yields rising to 3.04%, an eight-month high, before subsequently falling back marginally.


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