THE number of people in work in Scotland has reached a record high, official statistics today showed.
Scotland’s workforce increased in size by 9,000 over the three months to June and now stands at 2.59 million - the highest since records began in 1992.
Unemployment has also fallen by 2,000 in a further boost for the economy. There are now 176,000 people out of work and Scotland has an unemployment rate of 6.4% which is the same as the UK total. It comes after a 13,000 hike in unemployment last month.
Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael said: “Today’s figures show we have a new record high in overall employment. Over the last twelve months Scottish employment has increased by 63,000 and unemployment has fallen by 21,000.
“This shows that working together as part of the UK with its larger market, stronger and growing economy and stable currency is creating more jobs and better opportunities for Scotland.”
He added: “Each one of the figures today represents another person or household getting back into the labour market. It also represents the certainty, stability and security we are creating for businesses by being part of the UK.”
Female employment has also reached a new record high with 1.25 million women in Scotland in employment, an increase of 36,000 over the year. The female employment rate in Scotland is higher than the UK as a whole - 69.8 per cent compared to 68.0 per cent.
Cabinet Secretary for Training, Youth and Women’s Employment Angela Constance said: “We know that Scotland’s economy has returned to pre-recession levels and these figures show that our recovery is continuing to gain momentum, with unemployment down and employment at its highest level ever.
“I am pleased to see that youth employment has increased and that fewer young people are now unemployed in Scotland compared to a year ago. It is so important that our young people have the chance to get a foothold in the labour market and we want to see this figure continue to decrease.”