Labour market figures out today show that unemployment has fallen to 8% in the last quarter, with 71% of people aged 16-64 now in work.
Figures released by ONS show that 29.48 million people are in work, with 201,000 people finding work in the 3 months up to June. Unemployment rates were down by 0.2%, and economic inactivity fell by 0.3%.
Salaries have also improved, having risen 1.6% from 2011 and regular pay has risen by 1.8%. This is the same incline as the first quarter of 2012, showing a steady improvement in pay.
Graeme Leach, Chief Economist at the Institute of Directors, said: “The only certainty in the latest labour market figures is uncertainty. Optimists will point to the sharp increase in employment, together with the small fall in the unemployment rate and the number of claimants of Jobseeker’s Allowance.
“So where does the IoD stand? The economy is flat-lining and we see no significant change between the second and third quarters. Companies remain very cautious about the UK economic outlook over the next 12 months.”
Neil Carberry, CBI Director for Employment and Skills, added: “This latest labour market data continues the trend of robust performance, given the recent GDP figures. Alongside a rise in overall employment, it’s particularly pleasing to see more people are finding full-time jobs.
“The overall high level of unemployment, especially among young people leaving education, remains a significant challenge. We also need to ensure that the private sector can create jobs across the UK, as the numbers point to a wide variation in regional performance.
“These need to be areas of particular focus for the Government in the autumn.”
Gerwyn Davies, the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD)‘s Labour Market Adviser, also commented: “In a continuation of recent trends, today’s official ONS employment figures appear to show yet another strong labour market performance.
“However, a number of factors suggest that fault lines are emerging. For example, redundancy activity has picked up for the first time this year and there are record numbers of self employed and people working part time because they cannot find a full time job. There is also a continued increase in the number of people on government funded employment and training programmes.