Employment hits five-year peak with record high in South West

Wiltshire Times: Employment Minister Esther McVey Employment Minister Esther McVey

The employment rate has hit a five-year high and a record 30.19 million people are now in jobs, according to figures published by the Office for National Statistics today.

Private sector employment has increased by 1.73 million since 2010, showing the Government’s long-term economic plan to back enterprise and businesses so they can create jobs is proving successful.

The number of people in work has increased by 1.35 million since 2010 - over a million of these jobs are full-time – and the employment rate is now 72.3 per cent, the highest it has been since 2008.

Today’s figures also show that the number of young people in work increased by 43,000 in the last three months.

Employment Minister Esther McVey said: “The South West saw the number of people in work hit a new record high of 2.58 million in the three months to January 2014, which shows that the growing economy is helping people to find a job, turn their lives around and have the security of a regular wage.

“The rise in employment nationally is being fuelled by businesses and entrepreneurs across the country who are feeling increasingly confident with the improving economy.

"They should be congratulated for creating over 1.7 million private sector jobs since 2010 – that’s over 1,000 more people in private sector jobs every day.”

“We now have the highest employment rate for five years, which shows that the growing economy is helping record numbers of people to find a job, turn their lives around and have the security of a regular wage.

“The rise in employment is being fuelled by businesses and entrepreneurs across the country who are feeling increasingly confident with the improving economy.

"They should be congratulated for creating over 1.7 million private sector jobs since 2010 – that’s over 1,000 more people in private sector jobs every day.”

The number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) fell by over 363,000 on the year, which is the largest annual fall since 1998.  The number of young people claiming JSA has been falling for the last 21 months.

The number of people who are unemployed fell by 63,000 in the last three months, with the number of people who have been unemployed for over a year falling by 38,000.

Meanwhile the number of unemployed young people also fell by 29,000 and has been falling now for the last six months.

The latest figures also show the number of job vacancies increased in the last three months by 23,000 to 588,000.

Private sector pay (excluding bonuses) rose by 1.6 per cent, which is the largest rise since October 2012.

This month's Labour Force Survey covers November 2013 to January 2014. 

ONS' vacancy survey estimates an average of 588,000 unfilled vacancies in the three months to February 2014, up 23,000 on the previous quarter and 92,000 on the year.

Total weekly pay in January 2014 was up by 1.4 per cent over the year.

Growth in regular weekly pay, excluding bonuses, was 1.3 per cent on the year while growth in private sector regular weekly pay was 1.6 per cent up on the year.

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