Unemployment in Scotland falls below UK average

Employment in Scotland has risen by 55,000 jobs.
Employment in Scotland has risen by 55,000 jobs.
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Scotland had its highest single quarterly rise in employment with 51,000 finding jobs.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the rate in Scotland had fallen to 4.7 per cent, with the UK as a whole at 4.9 per cent.

The employment level rose 51,000 over the quarter to 2,631,000 - the largest quarterly rise on record.

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Britain’s employment picture remained bright over the period including the first month after the Brexit vote, with unemployment continuing to fall and a record number of people in work.
The employment rate remained at a record high of 74.5 per cent, with 31.8 million people in work in the three months to July - 174,000 more than the previous quarter.

A total of 1.63 million people are unemployed - a fall of 39,000 over the quarter and 190,000 down compared with a year ago, giving a jobless rate of 4.9 per cent.

READ MORE: Scotland’s unemployment at its lowest since 2009

The claimant count, including Jobseeker’s Allowance, jumped by 2,400 to 771,000 between July and August, the Office for National Statistics said.

The single month Labour Force Survey for July recorded an unemployment rate of 4.7 per cent, down 0.4 per cent compared with the month before, while the unemployment level dropped by 154,000 to 1.6 million over the period.

Job vacancies were up 3,000 to 752,000 between June and August, which includes two months after Britain voted to leave the European Union.

Average earnings increased by 2.3 per cent in the year to July, 0.2 per cent down on the previous month

Keith Brown, the Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work, said: “These encouraging figures continue to show that the fundamentals of the Scottish economy are strong, with a 51,000 rise in the employment level and a drop of just over 1 percentage point in the unemployment rate over the quarter, taking it below that of the UK average.

“While these figures are welcome, the Scottish government is absolutely committed to taking further action.

“Our Labour Market Strategy shows that there is still more that we can and will do.”


Regional unemployment between May and July. (Shown below as region, total unemployed, change of quarter and unemployment rate)

North East 98,000, plus 3,000, 7.5%

North West 181,000, plus 7,000, 5.1%

Yorkshire and Humber 159,000, plus 1,000, 5.9%

East Midlands 102,000, minus 4,000, 4.3%

West Midlands 176,000, plus 17,000, 6.2%

East of England 101,000, minus 16,000, 3.2%

London 289,000, plus 9,000, 6.1%

South East 166,000, minus 15,000, 3.5%

South West 118,000, plus 1,000, 4.2%

Wales 63,000, minus 10,000, 4.1%

Scotland 130,000, minus 29,000, 4.7%

Northern Ireland 49,000, minus 2,000, 5.6%

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