§ 59. Mr. Patrick Thompson
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what assessment has been made of the effect upon the economy of the fall in adult unemployment since 1981.
§ Mr. Major
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has decreased from 9.0 per cent. at the end of 1981 to 7.7 per cent. in October this year. This has been accompanied by an increase in the workforce in employment of more than 1.6 million, which together with an exceptionally strong increase in productivity, has been reflected in a rate of growth of output since 1980 faster than that in any other major EC country.