Next Month

January 2018

The labour market figures published on 24 January are more positive than was anticipated with a return to significant employment growth, working age inactivity falling, and vacancy levels rising but there were also some worrying signs on youth and claimant unemployment and on temporary working.

  • Unemployment is 1,439,000, up by 10,000 from last month’s published figure (quarterly headline is down by 3,000) and the unemployment rate is 4.3%, no change on last month and no change on last quarter.
  • The number of claimant unemployed is 832,500, up 8,600 on last month, and the claimant rate is 2.4%.
  • The number of workless young people (not in employment, full-time education or training) is 986,000, up 22,000 on the quarter, representing 13.9% of the youth population (up 0.4 percentage points).
  • Youth unemployment (including students) is 538,000, up 14,000 on the quarter.
  • There are 1.8 unemployed people per vacancy. Learning and Work Institute estimates this figure may rise slightly next month.
  • The employment rate is 75.3% (up 0.3 percentage points on last month’s published figure and up 0.2 percentage points in the preferred quarterly measure).

Chart 1: UK unemployment (ILO)

The latest unemployment figure is 1,439,000. It has risen by 10,000 from the figure published last month. On the basis of later claimant count figures, Learning and Work Institute estimates that unemployment may continue to rise, although this remains highly uncertain. The unemployment rate showed no change at 4.3%.

Chart 2: Percentage unemployed not claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance

The proportion of unemployed people not claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance has fallen to 43.6%; (628,000).

Chart 3: Youth long-term unemployment (six months and over, 18-24)

Youth long-term unemployment (which can include students) has fallen by 4,000 from last month’s figure and is now 144,000. The youth long-term Jobseeker’s Allowance count (but not UC) remains far behind, at 20,600. The count fell by 100 this month.

Chart 4: Adult long-term unemployment (12 months and over, 25+)

Adult long-term unemployment on the survey measure is now 299,000. The Jobseeker’s Allowance measure is 151,200.