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Employment level increases

Published: 11 Nov 2015 09:30
Part of:
Economy, Statistics

Highest July to September youth employment level since 2008.

The number of people in employment, including those aged 16-24, has risen, according to official statistics released today.

ONS statistics - covering the period July to September 2015 - show a 3,000 increase in the number of people in employment compared to the last quarter.

Scotland also continues to outperform the UK as a whole on employment (74.1 per cent), youth employment (63.1 per cent) and female employment (71.1 per cent) rates.

After increasing by 34,000 over the year, youth employment is at its highest July to September level since 2008.

The statistics also show that labour market participation increased by 14,000 over the quarter to reach 2,780,000.

Speaking from the Muslim Women's Resource Centre – which boosts employability in minority ethnic communities - Cabinet Secretary for Fair Work, Skills and Training Roseanna Cunningham said:

"I am pleased to note the increases in the employment level. Although more work is required to ensure more young people find employment, it is good to know that 34,000 more people aged between 16 and 24 have found work since last year and that Scotland continues to perform better than the UK as a whole on this crucial indicator.

"Challenges do exist. For example, there has been a small 0.1 percentage point year-on-year rise in the unemployment rate to 6 per cent. In addition, recent economic growth has been driven, in part, by continued infrastructure investment by the Scottish public sector. This investment is threatened by the cuts the UK Government plans to implement to achieve its fiscal mandate. We also have concerns about the impact of UK cuts on wider business and investor confidence.

"The Scottish Government has put forward an alternative option for a UK-wide fiscal mandate, which would ensure the UK's debt and deficit are put on a downward path while allowing up to an additional cumulative £150 billion of investment across the UK by 2019-20 – with around £12 billion in Scotland – compared to the UK Government's current plans. Such investment would support continued economic growth and is in total contrast to the huge public spending reductions that have been set out by Westminster.

"The UK Government's plans to cut working tax credits, for example, are a clear attack on low income working families. These families must be protected as a matter of urgency and we will strive to ensure that employment remains fair for every family in Scotland.

"To that end, we will continue to do all that we can with every power at our disposal to focus on growing the economy, increasing employment, lowering unemployment and removing any barriers to the jobs market which may remain."

Notes to editors

Labour market statistics can be found here.