Number of people in work at record high

Figures released today by the Office of National Statistics (ONS) show the number of people in work has risen to a record high. The number of people in work rose 141,000 on the quarter and 328,000 on the year to an all-time high of 32.53 million. There are nearly 3.5 million more people in work since the Conservatives came to office in 2010.

Today’s figures show:

·         Wages grew by 3.3%. Inflation was at 2.3% in November 2018, meaning wages continue to rise faster than prices.

·         Unemployment fell by 68,000 on the year and the unemployment rate is a record low at 4%.

·         Youth unemployment continues to fall, down 27,000 on the year and almost half of what it was in 2010.

No Labour government has ever left office with unemployment lower than when it started. Comparing roughly the election periods of October to December 1974 to March to May 1979, the unemployment level increased from 976,000 to 1.4 million.  Taking May to July 1997 to March to May 2010, the unemployment level increased from 2.1 million to 2.5 million.*

Amber Rudd MP, Secretary of State for the Department of Work and Pensions, said:

“More people than ever before have the security of a regular pay packet, wages are continuing to rise faster than prices so people’s pay goes further and we’re working hard to deliver more, higher paying jobs.

“Behind every employment number is a person and a family whose self-esteem, mental wellbeing, economic circumstances and life chances are all vastly improved by being in the workplace, and we’re helping to create a better life for families across the country.

“Labour have proved this week that the only thing they bring to the table is a reckless plan for our economy, and Jeremy Corbyn and John McDonnell would clobber the pockets of families in every corner of our nation.”




*(ONS, Labour Market Statistics, 11 December 2018, link; Fullfact, 7 April 2014, link).