You are here: Home - Household Bills - News -

Employment levels highest since 1971

Written by:
Employment is now at its highest level since the early 1970s, according to the latest government figures.

Unemployment fell by 14,000 between October and December to 1.36 million, while the employment rate is the highest since 1971. There were 167,000 more people in employment during the final three months of 2018 than during July to September.

Average earnings increased by 3.4% in the year to December, which puts earnings growth well ahead of inflation, which dipped to 1.8% in January.

Tom Stevenson investment director for Personal Investing at Fidelity International, said: “The UK economy received a much needed confidence boost today thanks to the latest household earnings data.  Wage growth including bonuses continued to rise at 3.4%, both including and excluding bonuses.  That is usefully ahead of the latest inflation reading of 1.8% so our real purchasing power is rising month by month. Unemployment also fell by 100,000 compared with a year ago to 1.36m. The recent resilience of wage growth is one of the few good surprises in the UK economy.

“We still, however, seem to be missing the right combination for unlocking the door to monetary normality. The political deadlock of Brexit negotiations continues to have an impact on the Bank of England’s decision to hold interest rates for the foreseeable future, and with inflation now below the Bank’s target, the Monetary Policy Committee will see no need to rock the boat for now. Especially, given that there is no reassurance that this upwards trajectory in wage growth will continue if confidence in the UK economy does not pick up.”

Joshua Mahony, senior market analyst at IG, said that the jobs numbers failed to meet market expectations, which put pressure on the pound, but added: “With employment, unemployment, and wage growth impressive by historical standards, the jobs market remains one strong point for the UK economy.”

There are 0 Comment(s)

If you wish to comment without signing in, click your cursor in the top box and tick the 'Sign in as a guest' box at the bottom.

The savings accounts paying the most interest

It’s time to get your finances in shape, and moving your cash savings to a higher paying deal is a good plac...

Everything you need to know about being furloughed

Few people had heard of ‘furlough’ before March 2020, but the coronavirus pandemic thrust the idea of bein...

The experts’ guide to sorting out your personal finances in 2021

From opting to ‘low spend’ months to imposing your own ‘cooling-off period’, industry experts reveal t...

What will happen if rates change

How your finances will be impacted by a rise in interest rates.

Regular Savings Calculator

Small regular contributions can build up nicely over time.

Online Savings Calculator

Work out how your online savings can build over time.

Having a baby and your finances: seven top tips

We’re guessing the Duchess of Cambridge won’t be fretting about maternity pay or whether she’ll still be...

Protecting family wealth: 10 tips for cutting inheritance tax

Inheritance tax - sometimes known as 'death tax' - can cause even more heartache for bereaved families. But th...

Travel insurance: Five tips to ensure a successful claim

Ahead of your summer holiday, it’s important to make sure you have the right level of travel cover or you co...

Money Tips of the Week