A recent study has found that there are just over 32 million people in employment currently in the UK. Despite this sounding like a promising figure, there has been an alarming drop. The number has fallen by 14,000 in the quarter ending in September. Even though this is a small amount in comparison to the overall number, it’s the biggest reduction in over two years. Therefore, even though the unemployment statistics remain favourable, attention should be paid to the downturn in the number of people in work.

Other important findings from the report…

  • The number of people classed as economically inactive increased by 117,000 to 8 million, the most significant rise in seven years. This number includes those on long-term sick, looking after a relative, or who have taken early redundancy.
  • Unemployment fell by 59,000 to 4 million, the lowest figure in 12 years. This has left the jobless rate being as low as 4.3%.
  • Average earningsincreased by 2%. However, this is down by 0.1% on the previous month, and 0.3% on last year.
  • Furthermore, average earnings per week fell by 4% compared with a year ago.
  • The number of EU nationals working in the UK increased by 112,000 to 38 million. Despite rising, the growth has been slower than in the past couple of years.
  • In comparison, non-EU national numbers fell by 23,000 to 21 million.
  • The employment rate for EU nationals is 6%, compared to 75.3% for UK nationals.
  • Productivity levels have increased by 9% during the past three months.

Cause for concern?

Even though the number of people in work has fallen by 14,000 in the latest figures, there is no need to panic. Steady growth has been evident throughout the past two years, and the number remains higher than at this point last year. As a result, one period of slight decline shouldn’t detract from that. Moreover, the overall unemployment rate has decreased yet again, currently standing at just 4.3%. This should provide the greatest comfort of all.

Source: HuffPost UK