The state of the Labour market

We have a long way to go to recover from the present economic difficulties both in Britain and around the world, but there are some interesting figures released yesterday on the state of Britain's Labour market.

Among other things the new jobs figures released yesterday show there are almost four million more people in work since 2010, showing the progress of Conservative governments in giving more people the security of their own income as we work to halve inflation, grow the economy and reduce debt. 

  • The UK, like economies across the world, is facing economic pressures, but thanks to a strong workforce our economy is resilient and we are making progress on our priority to halve inflation.
  • New figures released yesterday show there are a total of 33 million people employed across the UK, meaning there are almost four million more people in work since 2010 and 1.2 million more people in payrolled employment since before the pandemic. Wages have also risen by the largest amount since records began. 
  • We know the best strategy is a jobs strategy - giving people the security of their own income as we work to halve inflation, grow the economy and reduce debt. 

Key stats about the state of the UK Labour Market

  • Employment: There are 33 million people in work in the UK (up 137,000 over the last year and up by 3.9 million since 2010).
  • Employment rate: Near record highs, at 75.7 per cent (an increase in the past year and up 5.5 points since 2010).
  • Unemployment: 1.4 million (down 1.1 million since 2010).
  • Unemployment rate: 4.3 per cent (down 3.8 points since 2010).
  • Wages: Regular pay, excluding bonuses, recorded the highest regular annual growth rate since 2001 (up 7.8 per cent in April to June 2023).
  • Inactivity: Economic inactivity rate fell this quarter and from February to April 2023 vacancies in our economy are down 66,000. 
  • Youth employment: There are 3.7 million young people in work (up 12,000 people since 2010).
  • Youth unemployment: 524,000 unemployed young people (down 415,000 since 2010).

More Labour market statistics:
  • The employment rate across the UK is 75.7 per cent, near record highs. 
  • There are over 1.2 million more people in payrolled employment since pre-pandemic levels.
  • There are over 3.8 million more people employed since 2010. 
  • Vacancies recorded a fall in May to July 2023, the 13th consecutive fall.
  • Labour-run Wales has the highest unemployment rate of all the nations of the UK, showing Labour cannot be trusted to create jobs.

Which leads us to Labour's record on jobs: 

Labour left people with fewer jobs and fewer opportunities: 

  • The number of unemployed people increased by one million in Labour’s last term in office (ONS, MGSC, 15 October 2014, link). 
  • Youth unemployment rose by 44 per cent under Labour – meaning young people were not getting the skills they need to get on in life (ONS, Labour Market Statistics, 18 March 2015, link).
  • The number of women unemployed rose by 25 per cent under Labour (ONS, Children living in long-term workless households in the UK: 2017, Table A1, 31 October 2018, link).
  • The number of households where no member had ever worked nearly doubled under Labour (HM Government, State of the nation report: poverty, worklessness and welfare dependency in the UK, May 2010, link).
  • No Labour government since World War II has left office with unemployment lower than when it started (Fullfact, 7 April 2014, link).

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