The number of people out of work in Britain has fallen for the first time since Spring last year.

There are now 2.65 million people unemployed, that's a drop of 35,000 in the three months to February this year. The rate is now 8.3% of the population compared to last month's rate of 8.4%. The Labour Party predicts the jobless rate will hit 3 million by next year, calling it an 'unemployment emergency'.

Today's forecast from the think-tank, the Institute of Public Policy Research, seem to back that sentiment up, believing the government shouldn't be at all complacent. It reckons an additional 962,000 people will be out of work by the end of the year.

The knock-on affect is the UK economy, consumer spending is being dampened and more and more people turning to help from non-traditional lenders to seem them through tough times where high-street banks refuse to help.

The reduction in jobless seems to bear out the Chartered Institute of Personal Development's latest work audit showing that there's a Madonna generation - women over the age of 50 - who seem to be defying the recession and finding work.