UK labour market data, June 2016 - PwC comments

Published at 10:22 AM on 15 June 2016

In response to today’s UK labour market figures, John Hawksworth, chief economist at PwC, commented:

“Employment continued to rise and unemployment to edge down in the three months to April 2016, but the pace of improvement has slackened since last year. This probably reflects a combination of global economic uncertainty, particularly at the start of the year, and uncertainty regarding the EU referendum outcome more recently. But job creation has continued despite these drags on growth and regular pay growth has also edged up, helped by the introduction of the national living wage in April.

“Looking at the past year, UK employment has risen by 461,000 but the pattern by age group varies considerably. Employment for those aged 18-24 has risen by around 250,000 and a net increase of 224,000 for non-UK nationals from other EU countries has been a key driver of jobs growth in this younger age group.

“At the same time, employment of those aged 50 and over has risen by around 270,000 and this is likely to have been driven much more by UK nationals deciding to work for longer. As we argued in our Golden Age Index report, published yesterday, this is a positive sign that the UK is adjusting to an ageing population, but there is still a considerable way to go to match top performers like Sweden. If we could achieve employment rates of over-55s at Swedish levels, we estimate that UK GDP could be boosted by around £100 billion a year in the long run.”

Ends.

For further information please contact Tilly Parke: [email protected] / +44 20 7804 8761

 


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