Opinion: Jobs for all?

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Is it really time for some unalloyed good news on jobs?

The latest figures appear to say so.

The Government says an ‘all time record’ number are in work – some 30.8m people.

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Private sector employment in Yorkshire and the Humber has increased by 197,000 since 2010.

Closer to home, Sheffield Job Centre says in the last year the number of people claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance has dropped by 26 per cent to 10,524.

An estimated two thirds of the 3,687 people who came off JSA started a job, giving the country a double boost as they stop claiming and start earning.

And that affects us all.

Meanwhile, ‘private sector regular pay’ has risen by two per cent, the Government says, compared with inflation at 1.3 per cent.

It also says there has been wage growth in manufacturing.

But the clincher is the reaction of the Federation of Small Businesses, whose members are not renowned for being bubbly. It says ‘job prospects look rosy for 2015’.

With Ikea and XLN in Sheffield and Aldi in Goldthorpe all set to hire people in droves, it seems the end of 2014 has arrived with a cup of good cheer.