ONS Labour Market Data: April’s Quarterly Overview

  • Thursday, April 18, 2024
GCE ONS LMD Mar24 Web (1)
  • The latest labour market data published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) suggested a challenging outlook for employees and job seekers.
  • Unemployment increased, while vacancies once again fell, as did the number of people in employment.
  • The Growth Company (GC) offers a range of services to help individuals into sustained employment and make sure employers can find the right candidates in a competitive market.

Earlier this week, the ONS published its latest quarterly overview of the UK labour market. The report included estimates of employment, unemployment, economic inactivity, wage growth, and other employment-related statistics.

Data from the Labour Force Survey showed that economic inactivity stands at an eight-year high, while vacancies fell and the unemployment rate marginally increased.

Quarterly Employment Data

The national employment rate stood at 74.5 percent between December 2023 and February 2024 – a 0.5 percent drop on the previous valid three-month period (November 2023 to January 2024).

The unemployment rate increased by 0.3 percent to 4.2 percent. Meanwhile, the economic inactivity rate edged higher to 22.2 percent.

Quarterly Job Vacancies

From January to March 2024, the number of job vacancies stood at 916,000 – a reduction of 13,000 on the quarter and the 21st consecutive decline.

However, there are still more vacancies than during the pre-pandemic period.

Quarterly Wage Growth

During December 2023 to February 2024, average total pay growth, which includes bonuses, was 5.6 percent. Average total regular pay growth, which excludes bonuses, was 6.0 percent – a decline on the previous period.  

According to the ONS, “[a]nnual growth in real terms (adjusted for inflation using the Consumer Prices Index including owner occupiers' housing costs (CPIH)) for regular pay was 1.9 percent in December 2023 to February 2024, and for total pay was 1.6 percent.”

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