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August 2016

Latest ONS labour market statistics

The ONS has announced that in the three months from March to May 2016, the number of people in work increased. The number of unemployed people and the number of people not working and not seeking or available to work (economically inactive) fell.

The statistics reveal that there were:

  • 31.70 million people in work (176,000 more than for the three months to February 2016 and 624,000 more than for a year earlier).
  • 23.19 million people working full-time (401,000 more than for a year earlier)
  • 8.52 million people working part-time (223,000 more than for a year earlier).

The employment rate (the proportion of people aged from 16 to 64 who were in work) was 74.4%.

There were 1.65 million unemployed people (people not in work but seeking and available to work), 54,000 fewer than for the three months to February 2016.

Average weekly earnings increased by 2.3% including bonuses and by 2.2% excluding bonuses compared with a year earlier.

Rain Newton-Smith, CBI Chief Economist, said:

‘These figures confirm the UK labour market continued to create jobs ahead of the referendum vote, although there was some underlying uncertainty represented by falling vacancies and subdued wage growth.

Prospects for the labour market are now more uncertain following the UK’s decision to leave the EU. This highlights the need for continued labour market flexibility, and to ensure the National Living Wage remains affordable for businesses, reflecting the broader economic situation.

Ultimately, increasing productivity, including by ensuring everyone has the skills to meet their full potential, will help to share prosperity across all areas of the UK.’