UK Employment Rate Shows Slight Decline in April-June 2023

The UK’s employment rate reached 75.7% in the period from April to June 2023, showing a marginal decline of 0.1 percentage points compared to January-March 2023. This reduction in employment was driven by a decrease in full-time employees and self-employed workers.

The estimate of payrolled employees for July 2023 indicates a monthly increase of 97,000 individuals compared to the revised figure for June 2023, totaling 30.2 million. The July 2023 estimate is provisional and will likely be subject to revision as additional data is received in the coming month.

Over the same period, the unemployment rate rose by 0.3 percentage points, reaching 4.2% for April-June 2023. The increase in unemployment was primarily attributed to individuals who had been unemployed for up to 6 months.

Economic inactivity saw a minor decrease of 0.1 percentage points during the quarter, settling at 20.9% for April-June 2023. The decline in economic inactivity was mainly influenced by individuals inactive due to family or home care responsibilities. However, those inactive because of long-term sickness reached a record high.

Flows estimates indicate a substantial net movement from economic inactivity to unemployment between January-March 2023 and April-June 2023.

The estimated number of job vacancies witnessed a decline of 66,000 over the quarter, totaling 1,020,000 in May-July 2023. This marks the 13th consecutive quarter of declining vacancies.

Remarkably, annual growth in regular pay (excluding bonuses) was 7.8% for April-June 2023, representing the highest growth rate since comparable records began in 2001. Annual growth in employees’ average total pay (including bonuses) was 8.2%, largely influenced by the one-off bonus payments made in the Health and Social Work sector in June 2023. In real terms, adjusting for inflation using the Consumer Prices Index, annual growth for both total and regular pay rose on the year, by 0.5% and 0.1% respectively.

During June 2023, a total of 160,000 working days were lost due to labor disputes, with over half of these days stemming from the Health and Social Work sector.