Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Booming employment but a note of caution
Posted by David Smith at 09:45 AM
Category: Thoughts and responses

Two things stand out from the latest labour market statistics. One is the scale of the employment rise over the May-July period, 286,000, giving the biggest increase in the employment rate, which went up from 70.3% to 70.7%, since 1989. The other was that men are doing a lot better than women. Their employment rose by 221,000, compared with 65,000 for women.

There is a big part-time element in these numbers but they were nevertheless very strong. The unemployment numbers, by contrast, were a touch disappointing. The Labour Force Survey rate dropped from 7.9% to 7.8% over the latest three months, but that equated to a drop of only 8,000 to 2.47 million. The claimant count, meanwhile, edged up by 2,300 to 1.47 million, with male unemployment falling, female unemployment rising. It will be interesting to see whether the employment or unemployment numbers get the most coverage.

Earnings growth, meanwhile, rose to 1.5% in the three months to July, from 1.1%. More here.