Commodities Buzz: UK GDP Grows 1.7% In 2017

Unemployment fell in the West Midlands between October and December new figures reveal

Ministers also pointed to longer-term figures showing improvements, with 17,000 more Scots in work than in the same quarter in 2016 and 10,000 fewer people unemployed.

Figures from the Office of National Statistics for October to December 2017 show Scotland's jobless total rose by 14,000 people.

ONS data shows average wages increased more than expected over the same period, climbing by 2.5%.

"Rising unemployment is disappointing, but job vacancies reaching another record shows that businesses are creating opportunities".

Business investment growth was flat in the fourth quarter, although it rose by 2.1 per cent over the year.

Household spending remained lacklustre, notching up a 0.3 per cent expansion in the final three months of 2017.

Just under three quarters of Scots aged 16 to 64 are in work, with an employment rate of 74.3 per cent north of the border - lower than the United Kingdom rate of 75.2 per cent.

"What's more, we also see wages have failed to keep pace with inflation, squeezing pay packets and making the situation worse for many families who are already struggling to get by".

He said: While an upturn in pay growth opens the door further for interest rates to rise again, possibly as soon as May, signs of the labour market losing steam add to worries that the economy is struggling under heightened uncertainty.

"If stronger productivity continues into 2018, the Bank of England may decide to hold at least once on raising rates this year", he noted.

"The absence of wage growth remains the missing piece of the puzzle in the UK's slow road to economic recovery - high employment should be the worker's best friend because that's what pushes up wages". The Scottish Parliament has more powers than ever before to boost the economy and promote growth and it needs to use them. Between the third and fourth quarters, transport, storage and communication grew by 1.1%; business services and finance were up by 0.9%; and government and other services increased by 0.2%.

By June 2017, the amount produced per hour was only 0.4 per cent larger than it had been nine years before.

The number of Eastern European workers fell.

So used to the "productivity puzzle" have economists become that when the ONS estimated productivity growth of 0.9% in the third quarter of previous year, many dismissed it as a blip.

Related news:

Hot News

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway received $29B windfall from Trump's tax overhaul
Feb 25, 2018 - 01:27
He admitted that the struggle in finding a "sensible purchase price" had "proved a barrier to virtually all deals" past year . Warren Buffett's letter to shareholders released Saturday showed the final scorecard of his 10-year bet against hedge funds .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top GOP group says Missouri governor stepping back
Feb 25, 2018 - 01:24
Ben Trachtenberg, an associate law professor at the University of Missouri, said it would be key to a successful prosecution. While members of Greitens' own party are on the fence about his future as governor, the Missouri GOP is standing by him.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Woods Shoots Even Par at Windy PGA National
Feb 25, 2018 - 01:23
Water comes into play on several holes, and the "Bear Trap" of holes 15-17 is one of the PGA Tour's toughest crunch time tests. Noren is priced slightly better than Hatton this week and that should open the door for him to be a popular betting pick.

American Electric Power (AEP) Upgraded by Guggenheim to "Neutral"
Feb 24, 2018 - 03:19
The company was upgraded on Tuesday, September 8 by RBC Capital Markets. (NYSE:WM) on Friday, July 29 with "In-Line" rating. Other hedge funds and other institutional investors have also recently made changes to their positions in the company.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top 'I'm trying like hell to hide that bald spot', Trump says
Feb 24, 2018 - 03:19
Trump fired up the crowd throughout the speech, including early on when he referenced the right to bear arms. Moving away from the podium, the president turned his back to the crowd and brought his hands to his hair.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Donald Trump says launching 'largest-ever' package of North Korea sanctions
Feb 24, 2018 - 03:18
The Chinese government has earlier issued a notice "explicitly prohibiting smuggling by ship-to-ship transfer", Geng said. In September, it barred ships and aircraft from US soil and ports within 180 days of being in North Korea.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Joss Whedon won't write and direct 'Batgirl' movie as planned
Feb 24, 2018 - 03:17
Whedon has confirmed he's no longer writing or directing Batgirl , saying he "failed" to come up with a good story. Which, in of itself, is a rather large hint as to what Warner Bros .is thinking for a new direction on Batgirl .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top HR McMaster may leave White House if Pentagon offers promotion amid tensions
Feb 24, 2018 - 03:16
Several sources told CNN that the push for a replacement comes after months of personal tension between McMaster and Trump. Among options to replace McMaster is General Vincent Brooks, the current commander of U.S. forces in South Korea.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Microsoft Surface Pro comes to India, prices start from Rs 64999
Feb 24, 2018 - 03:14
The 12.3-inch display has a resolution of 2736 x 1824 (267 ppi) and for the internals, you have a bunch of options. The money will go in payment of the thinnest Surface Pro, with thickness less than 9 mm for the tablet part.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Ex-Dolphins OL Jonathan Martin arrested after disturbing Instagram story
Feb 24, 2018 - 03:13
An NFL investigation found that Incognito, Pouncey and teammate John Jerry engaged in persistent harassment directed at Martin. Kway said the department was unable to publicly confirm that Martin's Instagram stories post was what caused the shutdown.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top United States men qualify for Olympic curling semifinals; American women fall short
Feb 23, 2018 - 01:44
Don't expect the United States' curling team to watch " Look Who's Talking Too" on their way home from PyeongChang, South Korea. It was a dominant run for Shuster's team, and the US defeated Canada again on Thursday to advance to the gold medal game.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top FCC to Soon Begin Process of Getting Rid of Net Neutrality Rules
Feb 23, 2018 - 01:44
Should it pass, Markey's resolution would also bar the FCC from attempting to repeal net neutrality again in the future. Markey's proposed block to the bill falls under authority granted to lawmakers under the Congressional Review Act.

Ferrari hopes to end Mercedes dominance with new SF71H F1 entry
Feb 23, 2018 - 01:44
The German's world championship bid fell away after leading eventual champion Lewis Hamilton by 14 points going into the summer break.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Saudi Arabia To Spend Billions On Western-Style Entertainment
Feb 23, 2018 - 01:43
He added that 500 companies have already registered to organize entertainment events this year. The authority said earlier this week that more than 5,000 events are planned for 2018.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Watch American Jamie Anderson soar to win silver in snowboard big air
Feb 23, 2018 - 01:41
She tried a huge trick on run No. 3, but was unable to land cleanly. "So I was just so happy to come here and do what I wanted to do".