Unemployment at seven year low

unemploymentUK unemployment fell unexpectedly to a seven-year low of 5.4% in the three months to August, the Office for National Statistics revealed.

The number of people in work climbed 140,000 to 31.1 million in the last three months, in line with analysts’ forecasts, while unemployment declined 79,000 to 1.77m.

Matthew Fell, CBI interim chief policy director, said: “We’re encouraged by businesses creating more jobs, leading to rising employment. It’s also good to see falling unemployment, particularly among those out of work for more than one year dropping by 44,000.

“While we want to see higher pay growth, this must go hand in hand with increases in productivity. It’s crucial that the Low Pay Commission retains autonomy over future National Living Wage rises to avoid unnecessary political interference and help boost jobs.”

Hargreaves Lansdown was a top riser after reporting a 11% increase in revenue to £78.5m, on the back of a 24,000 increase in new clients in the quarter to 30 September.

Domino’s Pizza advanced after saying full-year results are likely to be ahead of its expectations, as it delivered a tasty performance in the third quarter and a solid start to the fourth quarter.

N Brown jumped as the company said it remains optimistic of a turnaround after reporting a half-year decrease in profits.

On the back foot, a batch of housebuilders including Taylor Wimpey, Johnson Matthey and Barratt Developments, reversed the previous day’s gains on the back of well-received full-year numbers from FTSE 250 peer Bellway.

The FTSE 100 fell 1% to 6,278.

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