Press release

Wales starts 2017 with year-on-year increase in employment level

Employment levels at the beginning of 2017 are higher than they were at the beginning of 2016

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Over the year, the level of employment in Wales increased by 24,000 and the rate was up 1.9 percentage points. The level of unemployment decreased by 15,000 and the rate was down 1.0 percentage point.

The claimant count has also decreased in Wales by 1,200 between November and December. Over the year, the level decreased by 1,500 and the rate was down 0.1% percentage points.

Headlines from today’s Labour Market Statistics include:

  • The employment level in Wales is down 18,000 over the quarter to 1.440 million and the rate is down 1.0 percentage point to 72.5 per cent. Over the year, the level increased by 24,000 and the rate was up 1.9 percentage points.
  • The unemployment level is up 1,000 over the quarter to 66,000 and the rate is up by 0.1 percentage points to 4.4 per cent. Over the year, the level decreased by 15,000 and the rate was down 1.0 percentage point.
  • The claimant count fell 1,200 (2.9 per cent) between November and December and fell 1,500 (3.4 per cent) over the year. The rate stands at 2.8 per cent. For the UK, the claimant count decreased by 10,100 (1.3 per cent) over the month and increased 26,900 (3.5 percentage points) over the year and now stands at 797,800. The UK rate is 2.3 per cent.
  • Economic inactivity is up 18,000 over the quarter to 459,000 and the rate is up by 1.0 percentage points to 24.1. Over the year, the level decreased by 21,000 and the rate was down 1.1 percentage points. For the UK, inactivity increased by 85,000 (0.2 percentage points) over the quarter but fell 63,000 (0.2 percentage points) over the year and now stands at 8.894 million. The inactivity rate for the UK now stands at 21.7 per cent;
  • Total employment for the UK fell by 9,000 over the quarter to 31,802 million. The rate decreased by 0.1 percentage points to 74.5 per cent. Over the year, the level increased by 294,000 and the rate by 0.4 percentage points.
  • Total UK unemployment decreased by 52,000 over the quarter to 1.604 million, the rate was unchanged and stands at 4.8 per cent. Over the year, the unemployment level fell by 81,000 and the rate by 0.3 percentage points.

Alun Cairns, the Secretary of State for Wales, said:

It is great that Wales has begun 2017 with higher levels of employment than this time last year. The latest Labour Market statistics show that businesses in Wales have the ability to thrive and grasp the opportunities facing us. Welsh businesses have shown that they are confident about the future and setting their sights high for 2017.

These figures coincide with recent announcements, such as the decision to house the F-35 global repair hub in North Wales and the new Aston Martin manufacturing facility at St Athan, and highlight that Wales remains a great place to do business.

Published 18 January 2017
Last updated 18 January 2017 + show all updates
  1. Added translation
  2. First published.