Press release

Employment reaches a record high with 31.77 million people in work

The number of people in work is at a record high with nearly 175,000 more people in work up to July 2016, compared to the previous 3 months.


The Office for National Statistics confirmed today that there are 31.77 million people now in work – up by more than 550,000 in the past year and by 2.7 million since 2010.

The employment rate in the UK continues to run at a record high of 74.5%, and the unemployment rate holds firm at 4.9% – its lowest in more than 10 years.

Employment rate remains at record high of 74.5%.

The rise in employment continues to be driven by full-time work, which has accounted for 75% of the growth since 2010. Average wages including bonuses grew by 2.3% over the last year.

Work and Pensions Secretary of State, Damian Green, said:

It’s great to see another record-breaking set of figures out this month with the unemployment rate at a 10-year low and wages growing healthily.

We know that there are fewer children living in workless households too, which underlines our efforts to help people move into employment and to build a Britain that works for everyone, not just the privileged few.

But there’s more to do, and we will continue to work with businesses to help more people take up the wealth of opportunities out there in the economy.

Today’s labour market statistics also show:

  • the female employment rate is at 69.8%, the highest since records began in 1971
  • there are more men in work than a year ago, with the employment rate up by one percentage point and now at 79.4%
  • youth unemployment is down by over 300,000 since 2010

Over 735,000 claims have been made to Universal Credit. Of the people now receiving Universal Credit, 41% are in work.

More information

Read the Labour Market Statistics – September 2016 from the Office for National Statistics.

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Published 14 September 2016