Unemployment figures fall to lowest level since 1975

The number of people
claiming unemployment benefit has fallen again and is at its lowest level since
1975.

The unemployment claimant count for May was
944,600, down 7,000 from April and is the lowest total since the autumn of 1975.

According to the Office for National
Statistics, the number of people in work reached a record

28.4 million in the three months to April,
after an increase of 88,000 over the quarter.

The Government-preferred International Labour
Organisation unemployment figure, which includes people not eligible for
employment-related benefits, increased by 19,000 to 1,554,000 over the same
period.

Average earnings increased by 3.3 per cent in
the year to April, up by 0.4 per cent from the previous month. Public sector
earnings increased by at 4.1 per cent – compared with 3.1 per cent in private
firms.

By Ben Willmott

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