A brief analysis of the ONS Labour Market Statistics published on 18 March
ILO unemployment: 1,856,000
Claimant Count: 816,800
Temporary workers wanting permanent work: 573,000
Part-time workers wanting full-time work: 1,322,000
Economically inactive, wants a job: 2,247,000
Unemployed : vacancies 2.6:1
Underemployed/unemployed : vacancies 8.3:1
Unemployment has fallen in the last year, but there is still considerable underemployment, with many people looking for additional work.
While the headline figure of 2.6 people unemployed for every vacancy is low; the number of people actually wanting work is over 8 for every vacancy.
There are also signs that the unalloyed job growth of recent quarters is slowing with unemployment rising in the East of England and Scotland in the last quarter. In South East England unemployment was unchanged from three months ago.
UK unemployment is at 5.7%, far lower than the EU average, but still higher than other major economies like Germany (4.7%) and the US (5.5%).