UK employment rate hits a record high while unemployment plummets to pre-recession levels

Posted On: 20th January 2016

New official figures show that over the last year more than half-a-million more people are now in work, bringing employment to a new record high of 31.4 million, along with the revelation that the UK has an employment rate of 74% – the highest ever recorded.Government Opportunities

This growth has been driven by a rise in full-time jobs. Wages have continued to grow strongly, 2% over the last year, and the number of vacancies has reached more than 750,000, showing the wealth of opportunities that are being created in the economy.

Unemployment now stands at 5.1% – the lowest since early 2006 – and long-term unemployment has fallen by 25% over the year to 488,000, the lowest in 6 years.

The landmark set of figures have also shown:

  • the number of women in work is up over a million since 2010 to new record high of 14.66 million
  • the proportion of young people who have left full-time education and are out of work has fallen to a record low of 14.1%
  • the employment rate for young people who have left full-time education continues to rise – up to 74.6%, which remains the highest in over a decade

Employment Minister Priti Patel said:

There are now more people in work than ever before and wages are growing – a credit to hardworking Brits and businesses alike. And in a further demonstration of the strength of the UK labour market, today’s figures show there are a record three quarters of a million vacancies.

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