May 18 ,2017 | by Claire Payne

UK unemployment rate reaches its lowest level in 42 years

UK unemployment rate reaches its lowest level

The UK unemployment rate has fallen to its lowest level in 42 years, according to the latest figures from the Office for National Statistics (ONS). 

The figures showed a drop of 4.6 per cent in the UK’s unemployment rate, with the number of people out of work falling by 53,000 to 1.54 million in the three months leading up to March. 


The number of unemployed people reached its lowest rate since 1975, whilst the number of employed people aged 16 to 24 reached 74.8 per cent, the highest since 1971. 

The number of women in work aged 16 to 64 between January and March also reached a record high, increasing to 70.2 per cent, whilst the number of employed men aged 16 to 64 reached its highest since 1991 at 79.5 per cent. 

The figures also showed an increase in average weekly earnings, with a rise of 2.1 per cent, whilst several sectors also saw an increase in the number of jobs. 


According to the May Employment Index from jobsite Totaljobs, catering and hospitality, not for profit charities and the public sector all experienced an increase in the number of jobs, with a rise of 42 per cent, 13 per cent and 18 per cent respectively.

Commenting on the figures from the ONS, Totaljobs said: “The continuing fall in the UK’s unemployment rate is testament to a robust job market, which remains strong despite the uncertainty ahead following last month’s snap election.”

Claire Payne

Claire Payne is a journalism graduate and News Writer for LSBF. She writes about SMEs, education and careers, entrepreneurship, women in business, and sustainability.

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