Unemployment falls by 63,000 to 2.33 million or 7.2%

19th March 2014

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Unemployment fell 63,000 in the three months to January with the rate at 7.2%. This is down 191,000 on the year to 2.33 million for November 2013 to January 2014 according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics.

Employment was up 105,000 from August to October 2013 and up 459,000 on the year to 30.19 million for November 2013 to January 2014.

The increase in employment between August to October 2013 and November 2013 to January 2014 was due to more self-employed people says the ONS while the number of employees fell over this period.

The employment rate was 72.3% for people aged from 16 to 64 for November 2013 to January 2014, up from 72.0% for August to October 2013 and from 71.5% the previous year.

The unemployment rate was 7.2% of the labour force (those unemployed plus those employed) for November 2013 to January 2014, down from 7.4% for August to October 2013 and from 7.8% the previous year.

Pay including bonuses for November 2013 to January 2014 was 1.4% higher than a year earlier, with pay excluding bonuses 1.3% higher.

Employment Minister Esther McVey said the overall fall in unemployment showed that “the growing economy is helping record numbers of people to find a job”.

“The rise in employment is being fuelled by businesses and entrepreneurs across the country who are feeling increasingly confident with the improving economy.”

For Labour, Shadow Work and Pensions Secretary Rachel Reeves said: “It’s four years since the government came to office – they said the economy would grow by 8% in that period – it’s grown by half that. It’s taken four years for the economy to start growing again so I don’t think the government should be complacent and I don’t think the government should be celebrating their successes as there’s still a huge amount to do.”

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