UK Jobless Rate Holds Steady at 44-Year Low


The unemployment rate in the UK came in at 4 percent in the fourth quarter of 2018, its lowest level since the 1970s and in line with market expectations. The number of unemployed fell by 14,000 on the quarter while employment increased by 167,000. Earnings growth held at 3.4 percent on the year in Q4, the biggest rise since the three months to July 2008.

There were an estimated 1.36 million unemployed people, 14,000 fewer than for July to September 2018 and 100,000 fewer than for a year earlier. The unemployment rate was estimated at 4.0 percent, it has not been lower since December 1974 to February 1975.

There were an estimated 32.60 million people in work, 167,000 more than for July to September 2018 and 444,000 more than for a year earlier. The employment rate was estimated at 75.8 percent, higher than for a year earlier (75.2 percent) and the joint-highest since comparable estimates began in 1971. There were an estimated 844,000 people (not seasonally adjusted) in employment on zero-hours contracts in their main job, 57,000 fewer than for a year earlier.

There were an estimated 8.63 million people aged from 16 to 64 years who were economically inactive, 94,000 fewer than for July to September 2018 and 153,000 fewer than for a year earlier. The economic inactivity rate was estimated at 20.9 percent, the lowest figure since comparable estimates began in 1971.

Latest estimates show that average weekly earnings for employees in Great Britain in nominal terms (that is, not adjusted for price inflation) increased by 3.4 percent both excluding and including bonuses compared with a year earlier. Average weekly earnings for employees in Great Britain in real terms (that is, adjusted for price inflation) increased by 1.2 percent excluding bonuses, and by 1.3 percent including bonuses, compared with a year earlier.

UK Jobless Rate Holds Steady at 44-Year Low


ONS | Joana Ferreira | joana.ferreira@tradingeconomics.com
2/19/2019 9:58:00 AM