It seems that there is yet more good news for The Gobblin' King, the most prudent Chancellor since King Canute told courtiers that he really, really fancied a wee dip...
UK jobless figure keeps on rising
The number of people out of work in the UK has reached its highest rate since July 2003, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
The number of unemployed people rose by 30,000 to 1.56 million between December and February, the ONS said.
That put the jobless rate at 5.1%, ahead of analysts' expectations.
Unlike, for instance, the rate of economic growth, which was way behind most analysts predictions last year. Well, behind the expectations of the analysts paid by Gordo, anyway.
The figures also showed that the number out of work and claiming benefits rose by 12,600 in March to 937,600, putting that rate at 3% of the workforce.
The latest claimant count comes after February's rise of 14,600 - the biggest monthly increase since the end of 1992.
It means jobless claims have now risen for 13 of the last 14 months.
Oh dear, oh dear; it seems that the paint is peeling off Gordo's miracle, and the rust is starting to show. Quick, quick, sell the economy, like a battered old car, onto someone else before the wheels fall off.
Our Cyclopean Chancellor must be getting a little panicked: when, oh when will Toni resign? And with mutterings about others possibly challenging him—Milliband and Milburn have both been mooted—it seems that Gordo might still be in the building when it collapses.
And employment rose by 76,000 in the three months to February, as compared with the previous three-month period.
Employment minister Margaret Hodge said: "The number of people working is now higher than it has ever been.
Margaret "Child abuse; what child abuse? Lalalalalalalalalalala, I can't hear you or the screams of the children being ritually and routinely buggered in the care homes for which I am responsible; oh look, I've been made Minister for Children..." Hodge later went on to deny that it was, in fact, a nose on her face and maintained that the Pope was actually Greek Orthodox.
"Combined with low redundancies and nearly 600,000 vacancies in the economy, the UK labour market is in a position that most would envy. But there is scope for doing more."
Well, how about, y'know, helping out business, eh? Or, I don't know, dropping taxes.
Or, do you mean that there is "scope for doing more" in terms of fiddling the figures?
After all, there are nearly 2.5 million on Disability Benefit (who don't count towards the unemployment figures even though they are... well... unemployed), which makes a total number of unemployed nearer 4.5 million, or about 14% or the workforce (using the figures above, the workforce is about 30 million. Plus, I've rounded down). Doesn't look so good when you put it that way, eh? Even if you only take the 1.5 million of those on Disability Benefit that Blunkett thought could be got back into work, that is still 3.5 million (nearly 11.5% of the workforce).
All together now...
The wheel's on the NuLabour bus go round and round,
Round and round, round and... *CLUNK* *CLUNK*