UK unemployment has continued to fall and the number of people who are in work has been on the increase, according to the latest official figures.
During the January to March period, the number of people out of work fell to 1.83 million, which is down 35,000 from the previous quarter. Compared with this, the total number of people in work rose to 31.1 million.
In April, the number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance fell by 12,600 to 764,000. An additional 202,000 people found jobs between January and March, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). In turn, this continued to boost the overall level of employment in the UK and this will hopefully continue to grow, with more people accepting jobs.
The UK employment rate was now at 73.5%, the highest since records began in 1971. However, on the other side of the coin, the unemployment rate fell to 5.5% in the January to March period, down from 5.7% in the October to December quarter. This was lower than the 6.8% level that was recorded a year ago.
According to the ONS, wages including bonuses rose by 1.9% in the quarter compared with the year before, and was up 2.2% if bonuses are excluded.