UCAS, the university admissions services say there has been a drop of 7.4 per cent in applications for university places in the UK.
But they say demand will still continue to outstrip demand.
Already there have been 50,000 applications ahead of acceptances in 2011.
At the same time the Office of National Statistics show there has been a record level of unemployment in the 16 to 24 year-old.
Liz Fieldfrom the Financial Skills Partnership said: “Today’s figures show that UK school leavers continue to vie for too few university places and too few jobs. These are highly challenging times for young people.
“Happily in a changing jobs landscape there are some alternative opportunities opening up.”