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Britain’s labour market continued to show signs of improvement as employment levels jumped further and unemployment dropped in the four months to December, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) reported Wednesday.
The employment rate in the period was 71.5%, up +1.1% on a year earlier. There were 29.73 million people in employment, an increase of 584,000 from a year ago. The ONS also said there was a 394,000 rise in the number of people working full-time, the largest annual increase since 2005. Employment was highest in the South East and lowest in the North East.
Meanwhile unemployment fell by an annual -0.6% to 7.8% with 2.50 million people reported to be out of work in the four-month period. The South West posted the lowest unemployment rate while the North East saw the highest unemployment figures.
Total pay, including bonuses, rose by +1.4% while regular pay, excluding bonuses, was up +1.3% when compared to the same time last year.