The Olympic effect is thought to have driven a fresh fall in UK unemployment despite Shropshire seeing a second consecutive rise in jobseeker numbers.
Nationally, the jobless total fell by 7,000 to 2.59 million in the quarter to July, an unemployment rate of 8.1 per cent, according to the latest jobless figures released by the Office for National Statistics today.
But with London accounting for 5,500 of the new jobs created, the impact of the games is considered to have skewed figures which paint a less rosy picture elsewhere.
In Shropshire, the number of Jobseeker’s Allowance claimants rose for the second month in a row, from 4,818 to 4,928, while in Telford & Wrekin the figure rose from 4,542 to 4,563. The figure had been falling consistently between February and June, but has now risen for two months in a row.
John Walker, chairman of the Federation of Small Businesses, said the continued fall in unemployment was good news, but that for the economy to recover at a faster pace more people need to find full-time work.
He added: “Policies targeted at stimulating job creation, such as extending the National Insurance contributions holiday, are needed to give small firms the confidence to create full-time positions and take on staff.”
The ONS said the number of people claiming the allowance last month was 1.57 million, down by 15,000 on July – the largest monthly fall since June 2010.
The number of people in work increased by 236,000 to 29.6 million – the largest quarterly rise for two years.
The ONS said the Games was likely to have been a factor behind the jump in employment, with London accounting for 91,000 of the rise. The number of Britons working part-time also hit a record high of 1.42 million.
The ONS also revealed that public sector employment fell for the 11th quarter in a row, to 5.7 million.