Unemployment Rises in the UK, Average Earnings Drop – 15 September 2020

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“This is a difficult time for many as the pandemic continues to have a profound impact on people’s jobs and livelihoods. That’s why protecting jobs and helping people back into work continues to be my number one priority,” said the UK Finance Minister, Rishi Sunak.

EnglandThe Office for National Statistics recently reported that the unemployment rate for the United Kingdom was at 4.1 percent in the three months prior to July, remaining in line with the analysts’ expectations and over the previous month’s figure, which stood at 3.9 percent. The number of people filing for unemployment benefits increased by 73.000 in August after increasing by 69.000 in the previous month, leaving the Claimant Count rate for August at 7.6 percent after being at 7.5 percent in the previous month. Analysts expected it to rise by 100.000.

“This is a difficult time for many as the pandemic continues to have a profound impact on people’s jobs and livelihoods. That’s why protecting jobs and helping people back into work continues to be my number one priority,” said the UK Finance Minister, Rishi Sunak.

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Average earnings, including bonus, dropped by 1 percent in the three months prior to July, better than the previous month figure which stood at -1.2 percent and better than what the analysts’ expected, as they foresaw it to be at -1.3 percent. Excluding bonus, average earnings in the three months to July increased by 0.2 percent, over the previous month’s figure which showed a 0.2 contraction and the analysts’ expectations, who foresaw it to contract by 0.2 percent.

By 7:57 GMT the Pound Sterling gained 0.20 percent against the US dollar, hitting the 1.2870 level.

Retail sales in China increased by 0.6 percent in August (year-to-year), after dropping by 1.1 percent in June and over the analysts’ expectations, who foresaw retail sales to remain unchanged. Industrial production gained 5.6  percent in August (year-to-year) after advancing 4.8 percent in the previous month and over the analysts’ expectations, who foresaw a 5.1 percent expansion.

In Australia, the Australian Bureau of Statistics released the House Price Index which dropped by 1.8 percent in the second quarter (in quarterly terms) after advancing by 1.6 percent in the previous quarter. In yearly terms, the House Price Index advanced by 6.2 percent in the second quarter, after gaining 7.4 percent in the first quarter.

The Reserve Bank of Australia released its monetary policy minutes, reaffirming its unwillingness to raise the interest rates until the economy is on its way towards full employment and inflation reaches a reasonable level. This implies that the bank is planning to keep its accommodative stance as long as it is needed and that the bank could apply further monetary measures to support the Australian economy.

By 8:17 GMT the Australian Dollar gained 0.34 percent against the US dollar, hitting the 0.7313 level. In the same way, the New Zealand Dollar went up by 0.33 percent against the greenback, hitting the 0.6720 level.

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