NIESR Press Note – NIESR reacts to the latest ONS UK Labour Market Statistics

Published: 15th May 2018



The National Institute’s Associate Research Director Dr Heather Rolfe said: “The latest employment figures from the ONS continue a trend of declining unemployment and growing economic activity among the UK population. The employment rate is at a record high of 75.6% for UK workers. At the same time, the number of EU nationals working in the UK has fallen by 28,000 on the previous year’s figures to 2.29 million and is the first annual decrease since January to March 2010. With a participation rate of 81.9% this represents a reduction in arrivals and increase in departures of EU citizens, which employers explain by uncertain futures and hostility. The reverse trend is shown by non-EU nationals in employment who increased in number by 20,000. This may be explained in part by employers making more use of the visa system when faced with skills shortages”.


She added: “These trends, in particular the fall in EU nationals working in the UK, are likely to affect the UK’s economic performance and also services, with the NHS and social care under particular pressure”.  




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