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Unemployment down as more people in work than ever before

Unemployment has dropped to its lowest rate since 2005 while the employment rate has stayed at a record high of 74.2%

Official figures from the Office for National Statistics released today show the unemployment rate now stands at 5.0% and there are nearly 31.6 million people in work. Employment remains at a record high of 74.2%

There are nearly half-a-million more people in work compared to a year ago, with wages before bonuses up by 2.3% in the same period. The growth in employment is being driven by full-time work.

Secretary of State for Work and Pensions Stephen Crabb said:

“Secure employment and a decent wage are key to transforming the life chances of people right the way across the country, so I’m delighted to see another strong set of figures this month.

“There are more people in work than ever before and wages are continuing their upward climb, which is great news for hardworking families who have seen a rise in their living standards over the past year.

“Our economic plan is delivering jobs and security right across the UK.”

Lee Biggins, founder and managing director of CV-Library comments:

“The ONS figures released today compliment CV-Library’s own data from Q1 2016, reaffirming that the job market saw healthy growth across a range of sectors, such as Education, Social care, and Distribution, despite the economic uncertainty surrounding the upcoming EU referendum and the introduction of the National Living Wage in April. When comparing year-on-year data, Q1 2016 saw a 15.1% job growth, as businesses continued to invest in their workforce.

“However, the latest salary statistics do reflect the doubt which surrounded the introduction of the National Living Wage, as the ONS reported a meagre 2.3% increase in weekly earnings. Complementing this data, CV-Library’s own research also revealed slower than expected salary growth, as advertised wages in Q1 2016 grew by just 3.9%. Looking to Q2, salary growth looks set to slow even further, as the EU referendum looms and the value of the pound continues to fluctuate as a result.”

Today’s labour market statistics also show:

  • The female employment rate is still at 69.2%, the highest since records began in 1971
  • There are around 750,000 unfilled vacancies in the economy at any one time
  • At 5.6%, the proportion of 16 to 24 year olds who have left full-time education and are unemployed has never been lower

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