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Young People: Unemployment

Volume 490: debated on Monday 23 March 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what his most recent assessment is of the effect of the recession on the number of 18 to 24 year olds who are not in education, employment or training. (264161)

[holding answer 17 March 2009]: Data from the Labour Force Survey (LFS) suggest that the employment rates for 18 to 24-year-olds not in full-time education have fallen slightly faster than for other age groups. However, it is too early to say that young people are or will be disproportionately affected by the current downturn, and the data may be affected by sample size fluctuations.

Over the last year increases in ILO unemployment have been spread quite evenly across different age groups. The claimant count, which tends to be more reliable than the LFS for looking at short-term economic trends, shows that the rise in inflows to job seeker’s allowance (JSA) has also been spread evenly by age.

There has been an increase in the percentage of 18 to 24-year-olds not in education, employment or training from 2007 to 2008, from 14.6 per cent. to 15.6 per cent., however due to the small samples involved, this is likely to include some degree of sampling error.