Official figures just released have shown that the jobless rate in Scotland continues to fall, with unemployment here remaining under 200,000 for the second consecutive quarter.
In the first three months of 2013, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures showed that unemployment for the UK overall rose by around 15,000. The jobless number in Scotland, meanwhile, fell by 7,000 in the same time period.
This puts the country’s jobless rate at just 7.3%, 0.5% ahead of the UK’s average, which is 7.8%.
The number of those finding employment in the first three months of the year also rose by an impressive 54,000. Holyrood has said that this is the single biggest recorded rise in employment in Scottish history.
It led Michael Moore, the Scottish Secretary, to say the ONS figures supported the action being taken by the Government. He said:
“This shows that the measures we are taking on the economy are working.”
He conceded that there is still much work to be done though, which will include maintaining the economic policies already in place. Understanding that concerns with businesses and those seeking work remain real, he said that proactive discussions would continue with the Government’s partners.
Many businesses are taking their own action to improve their market position. For some, this includes introducing invoice discounting facilities as a matter of course.
This not only decreases the reliance on credit lines and boosts cash flow, it also helps empower market exploitation, and thereby work to create new positions.
The ONS data also showed JSA claimants fell in the period.