Britain's underemployment crisis eases, study shows

Britain's “underemployment” problem of reluctant part-time workers is easing, new research has shown, as more full-time jobs were created for a seventh month running in April. By The Telegraph’s economics editor, Philip Aldrick.

Demand by companies for permanent staff increased more quickly last month than in March and the number of full-time appointments also rose, according to a study by KPMG and the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC).

The study will help allay fears that falling unemployment has been largely down to a growing volume of part-timers and the self-employed who want more work.

According to recent analysis by David Bell and David Blanchflower, the “underemployment” rate – which measures those who need more work as well as those out of work – is 9.9pc, compared with the official unemployment rate of 7.9pc.

Kevin Green, REC chief executive, said: “Demand in the economy is returning, slowly but surely. Businesses are feeling more confident, hence the seventh consecutive month of permanent jobs growth.

“It really is one in the eye for the naysayers who talk down our labour market and dismiss improving employment figures as being 'the wrong kind of jobs’.”

Unemployment rose last month, according to official figures, and average pay rises fell to just 1pc – the lowest rate of growth since records began in 2001. However, KPMG and REC’s research showed that starting salaries increased in April for a 12th month running.

According to the survey of UK companies, compiled by Markit, the permanent job vacancy indicator stood at 54.5 in April, where anything above 50 indicates growth. Permanent job placements also quickened, with a reading of 52.5.

The number of temporary job placements declined, however, and the rate of growth in temporary vacancies slowed.

This article was originally featured on telegraph.co.uk/finance/jobs

Tuesday, 14 May 2013

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Britain's underemployment crisis eases, study shows