Average earnings rise despite ‘flat’ labour market

The
labour market has remained flat this year, but average earnings have risen.

Survey
data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) shows that overall
employment rates have risen slightly – up 47,000 the first three months to 27.9
million – but there has been little change in the working age employment rates
(74.6 per cent).

The
number of women in employment rose by 68,000 to 12.9 million, the highest level
since the ONS started the Labour Force Survey in 1984.

Unemployment
rates have fallen slightly to 1.5 million, with 2,100 fewer people claiming
jobseeker’s allowance in April than in March.

The
rate of growth for average earnings was 3.4 per cent for the year to March
2003. Earnings growth in the manufacturing sector has risen to 4.7 per cent
from 4.2 per cent, and to 2.3 per cent from 1.9 per cent in the private sector
services.

By
Roisin Woolnough

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