Saturday, July 21, 2012

Weird Unemployment Data - Is the Tory Led Government & Big Business Manipulating the Stats?

For the third consecutive month unemployment has fallen, great news - or is it? Along with the small drop in unemployment, yet again there is a sharp rise in those claiming benefits. As long as it is genuine any fall in unemployment is to be welcomed, however, if people are losing their jobs and claiming benefit, why is the claimant count rising and yet not registering on the unemployment register? Why has the long term unemployed count risen by 18,000? It doesn't makes sense. It can't be just an mathematical anomaly, this must be happening for a reason, what is causing it?

In the 1980s, Margaret Thatcher's Conservative government encouraged job centre staff to transfer hundreds of thousands of unemployed people from the unemployment register over to claiming invalidity benefits so she could claim that her government had reduced joblessness. Effectively disguising the true  fallout from the pit closures. Many thousands of miners lost their jobs decimating entire communities (many of which have never recovered). Yet the pit redundancies had no impact on official unemployment figures because the unemployment figures were being falsified. 

Could something like this be happening now? Overall (removing the Olympic Games temporary jobs) official figures confirm that the private sector is not making  enough jobs to offset public sector job losses and the private sector may take as long as 14 years to make up the shortfall of jobs. Those claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) has risen by 6.100 in the quarter February to May, yet we are told that unemployment is falling, how are these people managing to elude the official unemployment statistics?   

The Mystery of Unemployment (BBC)

How many people a have been removed from the unemployment register because they are attending a training course? They are not then classed as unemployed but classed as training.

I know a carpenter roofer, for the past three years he (and a lot of his mates) have hardly had any work but none of them have signed on, so they are not registered as unemployed, how many others are like this?
  • To know how many people are applying for JSA but are being transferred to other benefits and so are not registering as unemployed? 
  • How many people have government instructed to be removed from unemployment register because they refuse to work for nothing on the "Workfare" programme? Are they claiming other benefits in order to survive?
  • An official register that counts how many overall job losses there were in all sectors, so we can measure this against the claimant count, perhaps then we may get a more balanced view of what is happening in the job market.
  • To know how many full time positions and how many part time positions there are.
  • A register that counts how many people have lost full time positions and have currently taken up part time work because they cannot find full time work. Unemployment statistics does not count these people as unemployed!
  • We need to know how many people that have recently left work and decided to start their own business are not claiming JSA or benefits, but are not working either!
  • How many people have lost their jobs and are too afraid to claim for fear as being labelled "idle, feckless spongers" by the government?
  • How many people have left full time permanent positions who are not on short term contracts. 
  • Is the record fall in unemployment in London due to the Olympics?
There has been a record number of people finding work in London, figures showed that the number of people in work in London hit a record 3.88 million, the highest level since regional employment records began in 1992.
If this is because people in London are being hired for the Olympics, there could be a further rise in unemployment when the Olympics ends and the effects start to fade. 

If unemployment is genuinely on the way down then why has the number of people working full time jobs has fallen by 120,000? Are companies hiring more part time workers than full time on purpose and is this why unemployment has fallen? 

It's no secret that the Tories count big businesses among their supporters and may donate hundreds of thousands of pounds to the Conservative party. Is there some kind of agreement for big business to hire more part time workers?

Hiring part time workers does actually keep costs down by using more part time workers at peak times and extending operating hours by using part time staff in the evenings and at weekends. It is also cost effective by using part time staff to work overtime to meet the demands of the business. Employers do not have to pay part time staff overtime rate until the staff has worked more than 40 hours.

Currently part time workers have the same rights as full time workers but the present government are busy changing all of these rights and soon part time workers will be pretty much stripped of their rights and this is another reason why there has been a sudden increase in part time work. The true extent of government changes is not yet known, however, the standard has already been set for  driving down pay and conditions, giving employers more reasons than ever to employ part time staff.

I believe this is one huge way the Conservative led government is managing the unemployment rate. In the end this will not help the economy as those on part time wages will not have money to spend in the economy so supply will always outstrip demand, it is a self filling legacy, the UK economy will carry on flatlining until the government change course.

Coincidentally, during the last three months there has been a small fall in unemployment,this is also the third month in a row that the annual rate of inflation (CPI) has fallen, is it really a coincidence or is it by design?  On the surface to a lay economic's person like me this appears to be an "at odds indicator" and I wonder how inflation has fallen if more people are in work surely they are spending more, if only on fuel and other work-born expenses, so how has CPI rate of inflation fallen? We also have historically low interest rates and house prices are said to be rising and yet another anomaly is that the RPI rate of inflation is also falling? This is a very conflicting picture.

Something else that bothers me, chancellor George Osborne can never be found when there are tough questions for him to answer, he can only be found when there is some good news for him to come out and crow about, so why was he k nowhere to be seen when the latest unemployment figures were announced? Could it be because he knew he would be asked some very tough questions?


Anonymous said...

Yes He is and it's going up all the time
Most of the jobs are made up.Or have all ready gone
But are still on The Job sight so more can go after a Job
that has gone .

Anonymous said...

Anonymous said...

Yes He is and it's going up all the time
Most of the jobs are made up.Or have all ready gone
But are still on The Job sight so more can go after a Job
that has gone .