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More people in employment compared with the previous quarter and the previous year

Comparing May-July 2013, with the previous three months, there was a rise in the number of employed people, and falls in the number of people who were unemployed and the number of people not in the labour force

Comparing May-July 2013 with a year earlier, there were 275,000 more people in employment, 105,000 fewer unemployed people and 52,000 fewer people not in the labour force (economically inactive).

Employment up 80,000 on the quarter and 275,000 on the year

Overall, there were 29.84 million people in work, an increase of 80,000 when comparing May-July 2013 with the previous three months. Looking over a longer time period, employment was up 275,000 on the year. The employment rate, which measures the percentage of people aged from 16 to 64 in work, was 71.6% for May-July 2013.

Compared with 5 years ago more people are employed overall but fewer people are working full-time and more people are working part-time

Looking at people in employment over the last five years, the number of people aged 16 and over in employment was 328,000 higher in May-July 2013 compared with May-July 2008, around the time when the 2008-09 downturn started. However the number of people in employment has increased more slowly than the increase in the population. The percentage of people aged from 16 to 64 who were in work for May-July 2013 was 71.6% - lower than the figure of 72.8% for May-July 2008.

The number of men in work for May-July 2013 was 15.95 million, virtually the same as five years previously. However the number of men working full-time fell by 272,000 to reach 13.85 million while the number of men working part-time increased by 281,000 to reach 2.10 million. 

The number of women in work for May-July 2013 was 13.89 million, 318,000 higher than five years previously. This increase in female employment over the last five years was almost entirely due to part-time employment. Over the last five years the number of women working full-time increased by 39,000 to reach 7.94 million and the number of women working part-time increased by 279,000 to reach 5.95 million.

Between May-July 2008 and May-July 2013 the number of employees and self-employed people who were working part-time because they could not find a full time job more than doubled from 689,000 to 1.45 million. For May-July 2013, almost a third of male employees and self-employed people who were working part-time were doing so because they could not find a full-time job. The corresponding figure for women was 13.5%.

A further fall in the number of claimants

Comparing August 2013 with a month earlier the number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) fell by 32,600 to reach 1.40 million and, over the year, was down 168,100. The number of JSA claimants is the lowest since February 2009. The Claimant Count measures the number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) and differs from unemployment as many unemployed people are not eligible for, or do not claim, Jobseeker’s Allowance.

Welcome to the latest on the UK labour market, covering the period May to July 2013.

Firstly, looking at employment. The number of people in employment has been rising on the quarter and the year, so that in May to July 2013 29.84 million people aged 16 and over were in work. This is a rise of 80 thousand on the previous quarter and 275 thousand on the year. 71.6 per cent of people aged 16 to 64 were employed.

Turning to those not employed but seeking work i.e. the unemployed. Overall unemployment is down on the quarter and the year. In May to July 2013, 2.49 million people aged 16 and over were out of work but seeking and available to work, this was a fall of 24 thousand on the previous quarter and a fall of 105 thousand on the number unemployed in May to July 2012. 7.7 per cent of the labour force aged 16 and over could not find a job.

Focusing on those people seeking work and claiming benefits principally because they are not in work. 1.40 million people aged 18 and over were claiming Jobseeker’s allowance, a benefit related to looking for work, this is a fall of 33 thousand on the previous month and a fall of 168 thousand on the previous year.

Finally considering those not employed and not seeking work, i.e. those not in the labour force. 8.96 million people aged between 16 and 64 were either not looking for work or not available to work in May to July 2013, this is a fall of 33 thousand on the previous quarter and a fall of 52 thousand on the year. Considering these figures as a rate, 22.3 per cent of people aged 16 to 64 were not in the labour force.

Returning  to employment and this month looking at full time and part time workers.

Of the 29.84 million employed, 21.79 million worked full time, which was 13.85 million men and 7.94 million women, and 8.05 million worked part time, 2.10 million men and 5.95 million women.

In the past five years employment has risen by 328 thousand. However, as the population has risen at a faster rate than employment has grown, the current rate of 71.6 per cent is lower than in May to July 2008 when it was 72.8 per cent.

Breaking this change down into men and women working full time and part time. It can be seen that over this time for men these changes largely cancel each other out, employment has risen by 10 thousand to 15.95 million. The number of women in employment has risen by 318 thousand, from 13.57 million to 13.89 million.

Finally, the number of people who were working part time because they could not find a full time job has been rising over the past five years. For men this has risen from 16.6 per cent to 32.6 per cent and for women, from 7.1 per cent to 13.5 per cent.

That was the latest on the UK labour market.

Categories: Labour Market, People in Work, Employment, People not in Work, Unemployment, Economic Inactivity, Claimant Count
Content from the Office for National Statistics.
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