Labour market update for London – February 2018
London’s labour market remains strong – little change on the quarter, improvement on the year
The ONS have released labour market data for London for the three-month period October to December 2017, with the data showing almost no change in the headline indicators on the previous quarter. The employment rate was up slightly and the unemployment rate was unchanged. Both are improved on a year earlier. In the UK, the employment and unemployment rates were both up slightly on the quarter.
- London’s employment rate (i.e. the proportion of London’s residents aged 16-64 population in employment) in the three months to December 2017 was 74.5 per cent, up 0.1 percentage points on the quarter, and up 0.8 percentage points on the year. The UK’s employment rate was 75.2 per cent, up on the quarter (by 0.2 percentage points) and year (by 0.6 percentage points).
- In the three months to December 2017 London’s ILO unemployment rate was 5.0 per cent, unchanged on the quarter but down on the year (by 0.5 percentage points). The UK unemployment rate was 4.4 per cent, lower than London’s. The UK unemployment rate was up slightly on the quarter (by 0.1 percentage points), but down on the year (by 0.4 percentage points).
- In the three months to December 2017 the rate of economic inactivity in London (the proportion of 16 to 64 year olds not in work and not looking for or not able to work) was 21.6 per cent, slightly higher than the 21.3 per cent in the UK. Economic inactivity in both London and the UK was down (slightly) on both the quarter and year.
Note on interpreting labour market data: the labour market statistics presented here are estimates based on a survey, and have an associated margin of error. Changes in the headline indicators for London, both on the quarter and the year, are within this margin of error. This means they are not statistically significant and may not reflect real changes. Furthermore, the current gap between London and the UK in employment and unemployment rates are also not statistically significant. However, London has had higher unemployment and lower employment than the UK for many years, so we can be confident that these differences are real.
Headline indicators – men and women
Over the past year, women in London have seen greater improvement in the headline labour market indicators than men.
- The employment rate for women (age 16-64, in the three months to December 2017) was 68.1 per cent, compared to 80.7 per cent for men. The female employment rate was up 1.5 percentage points on the year, while the male employment rate was up a lower 0.2 percentage points on the year.
- The unemployment rate for women (age 16 plus, in the three months to December 2017) was 5.2 per cent, compared to 4.8 per cent for men. The female unemployment rate was down 1.0 percentage points on the year, while the male unemployment rate was down a lower 0.2 percentage points on the year.
- The female inactivity rate has fallen on the year (by 0.8 percentage points) to 28.0 per cent. The male inactivity rate is substantially lower, but was unchanged on the year at 15.2 per cent.
Employment and jobs data
*All figures are seasonally adjusted. Rates are based on working age (16 – 64 male and female), with the exception of unemployment rate which is age 16 and above. Note: we are no longer including a table with the claimant count (the number of people claiming unemployment benefits). The roll out of Universal Credit has caused problems with this statistic because of differences in definition and administrative processes between Jobseekers’ Allowance and Universal Credit. The ONS no longer publishes the claimant count as an official statistic. In September 2017 we provided a briefing.
Employment rate and unemployment rate charts