“The number of people in work continues to grow as the UK jobs market proves itself steady in an uncertain political climate. It is encouraging to see the jobs market leading decision making, as the rise in the National Living Wage fuels the wheel of fortune and the employment rate remains at its highest level.
“Employment and self-employment are no longer seen as goals at different ends of the pitch, but part of a more united whole, following the rise in the number of part-time and full-time employees. Companies such as Asda have adapted to the changes in the labour market, offering a pay rise to employees if they voluntarily sign up to their new flexible contracts. Rather than collapse under pressure, the labour market has created new opportunities for jobseekers such as ‘returnships’ and better equipped apprenticeships as well as adapting existing employees to new ways of working.
“As the temperature warms up, the jobs market is also coming to the boil but the UK will have to work hard to ensure ongoing Brexit negotiations don’t introduce a cold front. It shall be interesting to see which sectors fare well and those that appear most vulnerable to the respective changes include construction with recent headlines suggesting 2000,000 jobs could be lost of the UK loses EU single market access. The UK can bask in the glow of the current employment climate, but we must be wise to how quickly things can turn.”
- Estimates from the Labour Force Survey show that, between August to October 2016 and the 3 months to January 2017, the number of people in work increased, the number of unemployed people fell, and the number of people aged from 16 to 64 not working and not seeking or available to work (economically inactive) also fell.
- There were 31.85 million people in work, 92,000 more than for August to October 2016 and 315,000 more than for a year earlier.
- There were 23.34 million people working full-time, 305,000 more than for a year earlier. There were 8.52 million people working part-time, 10,000 more than for a year earlier.
- The employment rate (the proportion of people aged from 16 to 64 who were in work) was 74.6%, the joint highest since comparable records began in 1971.
- There were 1.58 million unemployed people (people not in work but seeking and available to work), 31,000 fewer than for August to October 2016 and 106,000 fewer than for a year earlier.
- There were 867,000 unemployed men, 21,000 fewer than for August to October 2016 and 56,000 fewer than for a year earlier.
- There were 717,000 unemployed women, 10,000 fewer than for August to October 2016 and 50,000 fewer than for a year earlier.