Retail Economics response: UK Labour Market August 2018 (ONS)
The latest labour market data from the ONS showed that the number of people in work was little changed, the number of unemployed people decreased but the number of people aged from 16 to 64 years not working and not seeking or available to work (economically inactive) increased.
The unemployment rate stood to 4.0%, down from 4.3% a year earlier, the lowest since 1975.
In the three months to July, the number of people in employment was little changed compared with the previous period —but rose 261,000 on a year earlier.
Figure 1 – UK employment rate (people aged 16-64, seasonally adjusted) May - July 2013-2018
For the three months to July, 75.5% of people aged from 16 to 64 were in work, slightly lower than the previous period but up from 75.3% a year earlier.
Latest estimates show that average weekly earnings for employees in Great Britain in nominal terms increased by 2.9% excluding bonuses and 2.6% including bonuses, compared with a year earlier.
Real earnings growth remains in positive territory albeit marginally, with average earnings (including bonuses) currently just 0.1% above CPI inflation.
Figure 2 – Nominal average earnings annual growth rates, seasonally adjusted May - July 2013-2018
For July 2018 in nominal terms (that is, not adjusted for price inflation):
average regular pay (excluding bonuses) for employees in Great Britain was £489 per week before tax and other deductions from pay, up from £475 per week for a year earlier
average total pay (including bonuses) for employees in Great Britain was £520 per week before tax and other deductions from pay, up from £504 per week for a year earlier
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