Covid recovery continues as jobless rate falls 0.2 percentage points

Rishi Sunak hails UK ‘bounceback’ as unemployment rate falls 0.2 percentage points with 356,000 more people on payrolls and more jobs available

  • Rishi Sunak has hailed improvement in the latest official employment figures
  • Unemployment rate dipped by 0.2 percentage points in the quarter to May
  • Number of people on payroll was up 356,000 in June while vacancies increased 

Rishi Sunak hailed more optimistic signs for the UK’s Covid recovery today with unemployment falling, more people on payrolls and more jobs available.

The jobless rate dipped by 0.2 points to 4.8 per cent in the quarter to May, while employment rose by 0.1 points to 74.8 per cent, according to the latest official statistics.  

Meanwhile, the number of people on payroll increased 356,0000 in June compared to the previous month – although it is still 206,000 below the pre-pandemic level. 

Vacancies also surged as firms got back to some kind of normality after restrictions were eased, with 241,200 more posts on offer in April to June. The total of 862,000 was 10 per cent higher than before coronavirus struck. 

Pointing to the impending ‘Freedom Day’ on Monday, the Chancellor insisted: ‘We are bouncing back.’ 

The number of people on payroll increased 356,0000 in June compared to the previous month – although it is still 200,000 below the pre-pandemic level

The ONS director of economic statistics Darren Morgan said: ‘The labour market is continuing to recover, with the number of employees on payroll up again strongly in June. 

‘However it is still over 200,000 down on pre-pandemic levels, while a large number of workers remain on furlough.

‘Our first, more detailed, local figures show that since November last year, when the number of employees reached a low point nationally, the biggest growth was seen in Leicester, while the smallest was in South Hampshire.

‘The number of job vacancies continued to rise very strongly. The biggest sector driving this was hospitality, followed by wholesaling and retailing.

‘As the economy gradually reopened, the unemployment rate fell in March to May. This was especially marked for younger people, who had been hardest hit by earlier lockdowns.’

The redundancy rate decreased on the quarter and is now back to pre-pandemic levels. 

But despite the broadly positive news, the economic inactivity rate was up 0.1 percentage points on the previous quarter to 21.3 per cent.

And although total hours worked increased over the three months with restrictions relaxed, it was still below before the pandemic.  

The jobless rate dipped by 0.2 points to 4.8 per cent in the quarter to May, while employment rose by 0.1 points to 74.8 per cent, according to the latest official statistics

Mr Sunak said: ‘As we approach the final stages of reopening the economy, I look forward to seeing more people back at work and the economy continuing to rebound.

‘We are bouncing back – the number of employees on payrolls is at its highest level since last April and the number of people on furlough halved in the three months to May.

‘Our Plan for Jobs will continue to create jobs and help people back in to work, through schemes like Kickstart, traineeships and apprenticeships.’

Source: Read Full Article