Even More People in Work

The latest figures show the employment rate has hit another record high while the claimant count is at its lowest in four decades. Despite turbulence in the global economy, more British people than ever have the security of a job and a rising pay packet. 

We have a record number of people in work. Unemployment and youth unemployment have reached near 10-year lows. This shows we need to stick to the Government’s long term plan to deliver economic security against the risks in the world economy.

With the number of workless households at its lowest ever, our economic and welfare reforms are delivering more security and providing opportunities that give families the best chance in life.

Key statistics

  • Employment: 31.4 million (up 521,000 over the past year and up by over 2.3 million since 2010). 
  • Employment rate: 74.1 per cent (up 0.9 points over the past year and up 3.9 points since 2010).
  • Unemployment: 1.69 million (down 172,000 over the past year and down 820,000 since 2010).
  • Unemployment rate: 5.1 per cent (down 0.6 points over the past year and down 2.8 points since 2010).
  • Claimant count (Jobseeker’s Allowance and Universal Credit not in work): 760,200 in January (down 85,400 on last year and down 734,600 since 2010).
  • Wages: total pay rose 1.9 per cent over the last year. Inflation over the same period was close to flat.

More statistics

  • The employment rate is at the highest in our history - at 74.1 per cent of people aged 16-64.
  • Unemployment has fallen to its lowest rate for nearly a decade – at 5.1 per cent.
  • Private sector employment is up by 2.7 million since 2010.
  • The employment rate for has never been higher with over 1 million more women in work since 2010, and the number of unemployed women down by 57,000 over the year.
  • The proportion of under-25s who are unemployed and not full-time students is the lowest on record – at 5.6 per cent
  • Among older people (50-64), employment is up 77,000 on the quarter and 260,000 on the year to 8.39 million.
  • The number of long-term unemployed people has fallen by almost a quarter in the last year to 488,000.
  • Vacancies were at 776,000 in the three months to January, up 45,000 on the year and 309,000 since 2010.


Labour always try and tell Britain that all these jobs are part-time, insecure and poorly paid. In fact:

  • Almost three-quarters of the growth in employment since 2010 has been full-time.
  • Real wages are continuing to rise strongly.

It was Labour that left people with fewer jobs and fewer opportunities: 

  • The number of unemployed people increased by one million in Labour’s last term in office. 
  • The number of people on unemployment benefit rose by 82 per cent in Labour’s last term.
  • Youth unemployment rose by 45 per cent under Labour – meaning young people were not getting the skills they need to get on in life.
  • The number of households where no member had ever worked nearly doubled under Labour.