UK Unemployment Rate Drops To Lowest In Decades

Frederick Owens
August 17, 2017

Unemployment fell by 57,000 to 1.48 million during the same period - a 42-year low - while the claimant count dropped by 4,200 in July to 807,800, figures showed.

Although, the ONS said average weekly earnings for employees in Great Britain in real terms, adjusted for price inflation, fell by 0.5%, both including and excluding bonuses, compared with a year earlier.

"The Government has failed to close the employment gap faced by women, disabled people and ethnic minority groups, who are still less likely to be in work, and has failed to tackle regional inequalities in the Labour market".

The latest United Kingdom employment figures show that the numbers of people in work rose, unemployment fell and the number of economically inactive people reduced.

"This is a further vote of confidence in our economy, coming after GDP figures showing Scotland's growth rate was four times faster that of the United Kingdom over the last quarter, and recent reports of accelerating growth across the private sector".

Including bonuses, wages rose 2.1 per cent, from 1.9 per cent in the three months to May and against expectations of 1.8 per cent.

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However, real pay fell by half a per cent after inflation was taken into account.

The employment rate among UK citizens aged from 16 to 64 reached 75.1 percent in the second quarter of 2017, which is the highest rate since the records started in 1971, the UK Office for National Statistics (ONS) said in a statement on Wednesday.

"This is the fourth month in a row where wages have fallen behind the cost of living".

The increase signifies 338,000 more people now in work compared with this time a year ago, with the ONS saying that changes to the state pension age for women also boosted employment.

The total number of people with jobs rose by 27,900 in July, as an increase in part-time jobs of 48,200 offset a fall of 20,300 in full-time positions, the Australian Bureau of Statistics said on Thursday.

Economists had not expected such strong figures as the economy has grown only at a muted pace this year.

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