FTSE creeps upwards after positive jobs figs

News of a sharp increase in the number of people in work failed to move the London market today.

News of a sharp increase in the number of people in work failed to move the London market today.

The FTSE 100 Index retained earlier modest gains to stand 14 points ahead at 4837.9.

The UK’s employment total rose by almost 100,000 according to figures released by the Office of National Statistics.

The data showed that more than 28 million men and women now have jobs, the highest figure since records began in 1971. The number of unemployment benefit claimants fell to its lowest level since 1975.

However, gloomy news came in the form of figures showing that more manufacturers were freezing pay than at any time for more than a year, indicating firms fear a more difficult year ahead.

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