Employment Rate Remains At Record High


The unemployment rate is now 4.2% – down 0.4% since last year – with the number of people out of work falling by 115,000.

The figures published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) come as Black, Asian and minority ethnic employment (BAME) is at a record high. The BAME employment gap – the difference between the employment rates of the ethnic minority population and the overall population – is at an all-time low of 10.1% points.

Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, Esther McVey said:

The employment rate has never been higher – with over 3.3 million people moving into work since 2010.

It’s a great British success story with businesses from Exeter to Edinburgh creating jobs – helping, on average 1,000 people find a job each and every day since 2010.

And with the increase in the personal tax allowance, this government has ensured that people are keeping more of their money before they begin paying tax – meaning more take-home pay, that’s more money in your pocket for you and your family.

Minister for Employment, Alok Sharma said:

At 75.6%, the employment rate has never been higher, with more people in work than ever before. And with a continued fall in unemployment, we have a strong jobs market that’s set 17 new employment rate records since 2010.

It’s also very welcome news that the ONS has reported that regular pay has outpaced inflation for the third month in a row.

The increase in personal allowances means that the typical basic rate taxpayer is now paying £1,075 less in income tax than in 2010. Thanks to the National Living Wage full time minimum wage workers have had an annual boost of £2,000 since 2016.

Today’s figures also show:

  • private sector employment is now at 27.04 million, up by over 3.7 million since 2010
  • the number of women in work is at a record high of 15.26 million
  • youth unemployment has fallen by over 40% since 2010
  • the number of workers aged 50 plus has reached a record 10.18 million

Separate figures released today show that more than 920,000 people are now receiving Universal Credit, with 37% in employment. The rollout of Universal Credit remains on track and the business case summary published last week confirms an estimated £8 billion boost to the economy every year when it is fully rolled out, with an additional 200,000 people moving into work.


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