Things aren't looking too bright on the job front :hmm:
Britain's public sector shed 111,000 jobs in the three months to the end of July - the biggest quarterly fall since records began in 1999
The figures were contained within a bulletin from the Office for National Statistics, which showed the number of unemployed Britons rose by 80,000 over the period.
It was the biggest jump in unemployment for nearly two years - and came in above forecasts.
David Cameron conceded, during Prime Minister's Questions, that the figures were disappointing and that every job lost was a "tragedy".
There was particularly bad news for Britain's young people, as the number of unemployed 18 to 24-year-olds surged by 77,000 to 769,000 in the last quarter.
According to the ONS, it was the first time growth in the private sector had not offset the decrease in public sector employment on a quarterly basis since autumn 2010.
The number of people out of a job in the UK now stands at 2.51 million - or 7.9% of the working-age population.
"Clearly I regret job losses in the public sector. I wish this didn't have to happen," the employment minister Chris Grayling told Sky News.
"I think the surge in this particular quarter has happened because it's the end of the financial year and this is a result of decisions that were taken at local authority level and in other agencies in the run-up to the end of the financial year in April."
The ONS said that compared with the previous year, there was a decrease of 240,000 (3.8%) in public sector employment.
The largest decrease was in local government (145,000; 5.0%), followed by central government, which decreased by 66,000 (2.3%).
The TUC's general cecretary Brendan Barber described the numbers from the ONS as "terrible".
"They are further evidence that the recovery has been choked off by a self-defeating rush to austerity," he claimed.
"The public sector is shedding jobs more than twice as fast as the private sector can create new ones, and with the increasingly gloomy outlook for the economy as a whole the outlook for jobs is as bad as at any time since the height of the recession."
A new report from the think-tank IPPR claims the public sector has been filling in for insufficient private sector job creation over the last 20 years, a trend which will have to be reversed because of the Government's spending cuts.