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The Scottish economy [February 1982]

Fraser, N. and Bell, D. and Hamilton, D. and Jowett, A. and McGilvray, J. and McNicoll, I. and Moar, L. and O'Donnell, N. and Simpson, D. and Tait, E. and Walker, J. and Wingfield, A. (1982) The Scottish economy [February 1982]. Quarterly Economic Commentary, 7 (3). pp. 5-24. ISSN 0306-7866

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The immediate economic prospects remain unfavourable particularly with regard to the level of unemployment. In the UK the number unemployed in January 1982 stands at a record 3,071,000. While the Scottish figure does not yet equal the figure of 407,000 recorded in January 1933, the present total of 346,547 represents a post-war high. Coupled with these figures is the rapid growth in the long-term unemployed ie those unemployed for more than a year. An examination of recent statistics from the Department of Employment shows that in the United Kingdom between October 1980 and October 1981, this category increased in number from 401 thousand to 785 thousand, an increase of nearly 961. In addition the Manpower Services Commission has recently lent its weight to the view that the true level of unemployment is around four million. As data show, even on very optimistic assumptions about the nature of unemployment and prospects for the labour market (see Employment and Unemployment Section), it is unlikely that unemployment will fall to historically acceptable levels.