News story

May labour market statistics for Scotland

Latest employment figures for Scotland published.

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Unemployment in Scotland increased by 19,000, to 168,000 in the period January to March 2015, according to Office for National Statistics (ONS) data released today. The Scottish unemployment rate is 6.0 per cent, which is above the rate of 5.5 per cent for the whole of the UK.

The labour market statistics also show employment in Scotland fell by 3,000 over the three months January to March. The number of those in employment in Scotland now stands at 2,622,000.

The Secretary of State for Scotland David Mundell said:

Today’s figures are a stark reminder of the of the difficult economic situation we have come through and the work which remains to ensure our economic recovery works for everybody and every part of our country.

We have a track record of taking the difficult decisions needed to rebuild and rebalance the economy. This has helped 185,000 more people in Scotland move into work over the past five years and has seen the number of people claiming benefit fall to its lowest level since 2008.

Both the UK and Scottish Government agree job creation is absolutely crucial and I hope we can work together on this issue and many more in the months and years ahead for the benefit of people in our country.

Headline Statistics for the January to March 2015 quarter:

  • Employment in Scotland fell by 3,000 over the quarter, and increased by 42,000 over the year, to stand at 2,622,000.

  • The Scots employment rate increased over the quarter at 74.5 per cent. The rate is above the UK average of 73.5 per cent.

  • Unemployment in Scotland increased by 19,000 over the quarter and fell by 11,000 over the year. The level now stands at 168,000.

  • At 6.0 per cent, the Scots unemployment rate is above the rate of 5.5 per cent for the UK as a whole.

  • Economic Activity increased by 16,000 over the quarter and now stands at 2,790,000. Also, the Economic Activity rate increased over the quarter to stand at 79.3 per cent.

  • In April 2015, the number of people out of work and claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) was 77,500.

Latest Data for Scotland

Employment

The Labour Force Survey (LFS) indicates that the number of people in employment in Scotland from January to March 2015 was 2,622,000. Employment was down by 3,000 compared to the previous three months, and was up by 42,000 compared to the same quarter last year. The employment rate remained unchanged on the previous quarter, and it was up by 1.2 p.p. compared to the same quarter last year, at 74.5 per cent. In comparison, the Scottish employment rate is above the UK average.

Unemployment

Unemployment in Scotland was up 19,000 over the quarter January to March 2015, to 168,000. The level was down 11,000 compared to the same quarter last year. The unemployment rate was up 0.7 p.p. on the previous quarter at 6.0 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 1,100 from March to 77,500 in April 2015. The level is down by 25,300 on April 2014. The claimant count rate remained unchanged over the month at 2.8 per cent, and is down 0.9 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 January to March 2015 quarter was 2,790,000. This was up 16,000 on the previous quarter, and is up 31,000 on the same point a year ago. Among those aged 16-64 the economic activity rate was 79.3 per cent, up 0.6 p.p. on the previous quarter, and up 0.8 p.p. over the year.

Published 13 May 2015