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The Mayor of London The London Assembly

Labour market update for London – March 2022

Alongside the summary of key points below, you can view the interactive version of our London labour market update.

This month’s briefing includes a quarterly update on total workforce jobs numbers in the capital (the ONS’ preferred source of jobs broken down by region of workplace). It also features ad hoc analysis on payrolled employees by nationality following the release of new data by the ONS.

To complement our London-level update, we have also produced a more in-depth analysis of Claimant Count data for London boroughs, which you can find here.

Previous updates and other labour market analyses are also available.

  • The most timely estimate of payrolled employees shows an increase of around 52,800, or 1.3%, in London between January and February 2022 and is now 1.4% above pre-pandemic (February 2020) levels.
  • The employment rate in London was estimated at 75.8% for the three months ending January 2022, up 0.3 percentage points (pp) on the previous quarter and up 1.7pp on the same period in the previous year. London’s employment rate remains close to the UK average (75.6%).
  • The unemployment rate continued to fall from its pandemic peak but is still higher than the UK average. London’s unemployment rate was estimated at 5.0%, down 0.4pp on the quarter and down 2.5pp from a year earlier. The UK average was 3.9%.
  • London’s inactivity rate (the measure of those not looking and/or not available to work) was estimated at 20.2%. While this was up 0.4pp on the previous year, the inactivity rate fell 0.1pp on the previous quarter and remains lower than the UK-wide estimate of 21.3%.
  • The total number of workforce jobs increased by 47,200, or 0.8%, between the third and fourth quarter of 2021, and is 103,000, or 1.7%, below pre-pandemic (December 2019) levels. While employee job numbers have recovered, self-employed jobs remain 15.5% below pre-pandemic levels.