Mr. Jim Callaghan
asked the Secretary of State for Employment by how many 620W the latest figures of unemployed persons in the United Kingdom will be reduced as a result of policies outlined recently by the Chancellor of the Exchequer; and over what period this reduction will take place.
§ Mr. Golding
I must refer my hon. Friend to the Chancellor's Budget speech of 26th October for estimates of the effects on unemployment of the measures which he announced. Apart from these measures, however, the future course of unemployment is dependent not only upon Government policies but on the response of the nation as a whole, particularly in such matters as pay settlements, investment and making industry efficient and competitive, as well as external factors such as growth in world trade.
§ Mr. Lawson
asked the Secretary of State for Employment, further to the Written Answer to the hon. Member for Blaby, Official Report, 11th January, column 774, if he will provide comparable figures of unemployment rates for the fourth quarter of 1977.
§ Mr. Golding
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rates, adjusted to United States concepts, for the fourth quarter of 1977 are:
per cent. Great Britain 7.2 France1 5.2 West Germany 3.5 Italy2 3.3 United States 6.8 (provisional)
Information is also available for the following countries:
per cent. Canada 8.3 (provisional) Belgium3 10.7 Denmark1 3 7.5 Ireland2 3 11.0 1 The rate is for October/November. 2 The rate is for October. 3 These are national figures which are not directly comparable with US concepts.
Except for the US and Canada and those countries noted "(3)", figures are calculated by applying an annual adjustment factor to current published national data and, therefore, should be viewed only as approximate indicators of unemployment under US concepts.