Published: Thu, August 16, 2018
Finance | By Loren Pratt

The UK unemployment has reached its lowest level in 43 years

The UK unemployment has reached its lowest level in 43 years

Tuesday´s official figures also showed the sharpest annual fall in the number of European Union workers in Britain since 1997, continuing a trend seen since the 2016 Brexit vote. That was the lowest since the three months to February 1975, beating the figure expected by economists.

The average weekly earnings for employees in Great Britain in real terms (adjusted for price inflation) increased by 0.4% excluding bonuses, and by 0.1% including bonuses, compared with a year earlier.

A report, published by the Office of National Statistics, has shown that unemployment rates are at their lowest since 1975 and productivity across the board has improved.

The market had been expecting the unemployment rate to remain steady at 4.2%.

The difficulty in finding suitable workers is also reflected in the number of vacancies, which rose to a record 829,000 in the three months to June.

There were 1.36 million unemployed people in the United Kingdom over the three months, the ONS said, 65,000 fewer than in the previous data period.

Office for National Statistics (ONS) data shows unemployment fell by nearly 20% to 102,000 in the region between April and June, giving an unemployment rate of 3.2% - below the United Kingdom average of 4%. Pay growth excluding bonuses was up 2.7%, the slowest rate since January.

"The number of people in work has continued to edge ahead, though the employment rate was unchanged on the quarter", senior ONS statistician Matt Hughes said in a statement.

The number of people classed as economically inactive, including students, those on long-term sick leave, taken early retirement or who have given up looking for work, increased by 77,000 to 8.7 million in the latest quarter, giving a rate of 21.2 per cent.

Matthew Percival, CBI head of employment, said: "Continuing job creation shows that flexibility in the labour market is a key strength of the United Kingdom economy". The BoE raised interest rates for only the second time since the financial crisis earlier this month.

"Achieving sustained increases in wage growth remains a key challenge, with sluggish productivity, underemployment and the myriad of high upfront business costs weighing down on pay settlements", he said.

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