Unemployment levels could fall further leading to a double-dip.
The number of jobless Britons has risen.
A double-dip in employment could be a "real prospect", according to the Institute of Public Policy Research (IPPR).
Statistics from the Office for National Statistics show that unemployment rose by 49,000 to almost 2.5 million in the three months to December last year and the IPPR is concerned that the figures may increase further.
The think-tank said that although a double-dip recession is unlikely an employment dip is a real possibility.
Tony Dolphin, IPPR chief economist, said: "History suggests the UK economy needs to grow at an annual rate of more than 2% if unemployment is to fall. There is a real risk that growth will not be fast enough during 2011, and that unemployment will reach new highs for this economic downturn".