Scotland’s unemployment rate dropped slightly in the last quarter, according to latest figures.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the rate between March and May for people aged 16 and over was 4.4% – a 0.2% drop on the previous quarter.
This was below the UK-wide rate of 4.8% for over-16s.
The employment rate for those aged 16-64 in Scotland was 74%, a decrease of 0.4 percentage points.
There were 2.532 million people aged 16 to 64 in employment in Scotland between March and May while 118,000 in that age range were unemployed.
Scotland’s Employment and Fair Work Minister Richard Lochhead said: “In March to May 2021, Scotland’s employment rate estimate decreased over the quarter by 0.4 percentage points to 74% and the unemployment rate estimate decreased by 0.2 percentage points to 4.4%.
“Separate HMRC early estimates, also published this morning, show the number of payrolled employees has increased over the month by 27,000 to 2.4 million in June 2021, however this is 24,000 below levels seen before the coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic.
“These latest figures reflect some of the challenges facing our labour market however, as the Job Retention Scheme continues to support jobs they do not show the full impact of the coronavirus pandemic.
“The Scottish Government will continue to do all we can to support employees and employers, however it is crucial the UK Government retain the furlough scheme for as long as it is needed.”