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The unemployment rate in the UK rose to 8.4% in November. This was a bit higher than the 8.3% estimated earlier, a number recorded also in October.  

After a drop in inflation reported yesterday, the chances that the Bank of England will further expand its QE program in the upcoming meeting in February are on the rise.

A more recent employment figure is the  Claimant Count Change, or jobless claims. The number of claims rose by 1200 – still rising, but at a lower pace.  Early expectations stood on a rise 9.1K.

Also last month’s rise was actually lower than expected: only a gain of 0.2K. The original report stood on +3K. The related  Average Earnings Index is rising at a pace of 1.9%, lower than 2% that was expected.

All in all, the employment situation in the UK remains dire. Yesterday, the UK reported that inflation was finally dropping – the year-over-year figure was 4.2% in December. This will likely be lower in January.

With lower inflation and higher unemployment, all is set for another raise in the Asset Purchase Facility, or pound printing presses. The current expansion of 75 billion pounds is expected to run its course through January.

So, February is the perfect timing for another expansion, which will likely be similar: another 75 billion pounds of bond buying, raising the total figure to 350 billion pounds.

GBP/USD is steady around 1.5350. For more on the pounds, see the GBP/USD forecast.