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The Scottish economy [July 1976]

Bell, David N. F. and Carruth, Alan and McGilvray, James W. and O'Sullivan, N. and Simpson, David R. F. (1976) The Scottish economy [July 1976]. Quarterly Economic Commentary, 2 (1). pp. 6-20. ISSN 0306-7866

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It seems that the level of economic activity in Scotland has passed its nadir, and that a slow recovery is under way. Among the forces stimulating recovery are overseas exports, stockbuilding, and the acceleration of manufacturing production in the rest of the UK. As the recovery gains force one can expect the underlying upward trend in unemployment to level off. Two factors will constrain any reduction in unemployment, however. Firstly, there is the problem, obvious from the July unemployment figures, of the absorption of school leavers into the workforce. There is now a strong case for an extension of the job creation programme to continue to act as a 'buffer' between full-time education and full-time employment. Secondly, further cuts in public expenditure, especially if they occur in housing or construction will to some extent counterbalance any reduction in unemployment through expansion in the private sector.