Rate falls to 74.3% in 3 months to Mar 2007
The trend in the employment rate is falling while the trend in the unemployment rate is flat. There has been a further fall in the number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance benefit. The trend in the inactivity rate is increasing. The number of job vacancies has increased. Growth in average earnings excluding bonuses has increased but growth in average earnings including bonuses has fallen.
The employment rate for people of working age was 74.3 per cent for the three months ending in March 2007, down 0.2 from the previous quarter and down 0.3 on the year.
The number of people in employment for the three months ending in March 2007 was 28.98 million, down 55,000 over the quarter but up 93,000 over the year. This quarterly fall in total employment was largely due to fewer women in part-time employment. Total hours worked per week were 927.1 million, up 1.3 million over the quarter and up 2.8 million over the year.
The unemployment rate was 5.5 per cent, unchanged on the quarter but up 0.3 over the year. The number of unemployed people rose by 13,000 over the quarter and by 101,000 over the year, to reach 1.70 million.
The claimant count was 890,000 in April 2007, down 15,700 on the previous month and down 57,100 on the year. The claimant count has now fallen for nine out of the last ten months.
The inactivity rate for people of working age was 21.2 per cent for the three months ending in March 2007, up 0.2 on the quarter and up 0.1 over the year. The number of economically inactive people of working age increased by 85,000 over the quarter to reach 7.94 million. This quarterly increase in inactivity was largely due to more economically inactive students.
The annual rate of growth in average earnings (the AEI), excluding bonuses, was 3.7 per cent in March 2007, up 0.1 from the previous month. Including bonuses, it was 4.5 per cent, down 0.1 from the previous month.
The average number of job vacancies for the three months to April 2007 was 638,600. This was up 32,100 on the previous quarter and up 50,900 over the year.
The redundancy rate for the three months to March 2007 was 5.8 per 1,000 employees, up 0.6 over the quarter.
Source: Office for National Statistics
People in employment, unemployed and economically inactive make up the total household population aged 16 and over, measured through the Labour Force Survey on a consistent basis since 1971.
Working age is defined as 16-64 for men and 16-59 for women.