7 FEBRUARY 1936, Page 2

The Increase in Unemployment The latest statistics of unemployment are

disquieting. Between December 16th, 1935, and January 26th, 1936, the number of unemployed rose by 291,157 to 2,159,722. Even though that total is less by 165,651 than the figure for January last year, both the exceptionally large seasonal increase after Christmas and the rise in the total of unemployment to over 2,000,000 cause -,some anxiety. The Ministry of Labour gives two explanations for the unusual size of the increase. The first, that on the day of the count employment was decreased by the exceptionally bad weather, is so far substantiated. that the building and contracting trades, which were most seriously affected, account for 107,000 of the increase, but the explanation does not apply to other industries in whieh-unemployment. also showed marked advances. The second explanation, that the number of boys and girls seeking employment: had grown by 45,000 since last year, will in itself increase rather than allay disquiet. The fact that the progress of industry in the last year has put hardly more than quarter. of a million more men to work, and leaves an equal- number subject to- seasonal loss of employment, justifies only very chastened satisfaction.

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