News story

Carmichael comments on latest unemployment figures

December Labour Market Statistics for Scotland published.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government


Unemployment in Scotland fell by 7,000, to 196,000 in the period August to October 2013, according to Office for National Statistics (ONS) data released today. The Scottish unemployment rate is 7.1 per cent, which is below the average of 7.4 per cent for the whole of the UK.

The labour market statistics also show employment in Scotland has increased by 11,000 over the three months August to October 2013. The number of those in employment in Scotland now stands at 2,546,000.

Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael said:

Every new job created in Scotland represents someone getting back into work and is to be welcomed. Today’s figures reinforce how well Scotland is doing as part of the UK and they are good news for people and families across the country. There are 83,000 more people in employment in Scotland than there were a year ago.

Unemployment has fallen and employment increased over the three months to October. We have also seen a further significant fall of 2,900 in people claiming Jobseekers Allowance in November. As a result there are 23,300 fewer Scots claiming JSA compared to one year ago.

This comes on the back of recent positive news and the continuing recovery of our economy. We will keep up all our efforts to create the right conditions for the private sector to create sustainable, long-term jobs.

Headline Statistics for the August to October 2013 quarter:

  • Employment in Scotland increased by 11,000 over the quarter, and increased by 83,000 over the year, to stand at 2,546,000.
  • The Scots employment rate increased over the quarter to 72.6 per cent. The rate is above the UK average of 72.0 per cent.
  • Unemployment in Scotland fell by 7,000 over the quarter and fell by 8,000 over the year. The level now stands at 196,000.
  • At 7.1 per cent, the Scots unemployment rate is below the UK rate as a whole at 7.4 per cent.
  • Economic Activity increased by 3,000 over the quarter and now stands at 2,742,000. However, the Economic Activity rate fell over the quarter to stand at 78.3 per cent.
  • In November 2013, the number of people out of work and claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) was 115,900.

Latest Data for Scotland


The Labour Force Survey (LFS) indicates that the number of people in employment in Scotland from August to October 2013 was 2,546,000. Employment was up by 11,000 compared to the previous three months, and was up by 83,000 compared to the same quarter last year. The employment rate was up on the previous quarter by 0.2 p.p., and it was up by 2.2 p.p. compared to the same quarter last year, at 72.6 per cent. In comparison, the Scottish employment rate is above the UK average.


Unemployment in Scotland was down 7,000 over the quarter August to October 2013, to 196,000. The level was down 8,000 compared to the same quarter last year. The unemployment rate was down on the previous quarter at 7.1 per cent, which is down 0.5 p.p. over the year.

Claimant Count

The claimant count in Scotland, based on the seasonally adjusted number of people claiming Job Seeker’s Allowance (JSA), fell by 2,900 from October to 115,900 in November 2013. The level is down by 23,300 on November 2012. The claimant count rate is down 0.1 p.p. over the month at 4.1 per cent, and is down 0.8 p.p. over the year.

Economic Activity

The number of economically active (defined as those in employment or ILO unemployed, and seasonally adjusted) in Scotland in the August to October 2013 quarter was 2,742,000. This was up 3,000 on the previous quarter, and is up 75,000 on the same point a year ago. Among those aged 16-64 the economic activity rate was 78.3 per cent, down 0.1 p.p. on the previous quarter, and up 2.1 p.p. over the year.

Published 18 December 2013