There are a record demand for business payroll services in Gloucestershire.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said employment rose by 140,000 over the period, lifting the number of people in work to 31.12m, which is the highest since records began in 1971. The employment rate for those of working age also hit a record high of 73.6pc.
Some 22.77 million people were working full time in the three months to August, up 291,000 compared with the same period last year. The number working part time rose 68,000 to 8.35 million.
The jobless rate fell to 5.4pc in the three months to August, from 5.6pc in the three months to May as the number of unemployed people fell by 79,000 to 1.77m. This is the lowest rate since May 2008, before Lehman Brothers collapsed.
“Today’s fall in unemployment has more than outstripped the recent rises, leaving unemployment at its lowest level since mid 2008,” said Nick Palmer, an ONS statistician.
“With headline CPI in negative territory and employment rising we are seeing substantial increases in real household earnings, which is supporting consumer confidence and should help boost consumer spending growth. This is clearly a positive for domestic activity and offers more evidence to suggest that market expectations of the first Bank of England rate rise being more than a year away seem too cautious,” he said.
The data also showed a marked drop in the rate of youth unemployment, which fell to 14.8pc in the quarter to August, from with 15.9pc in the previous three months.
Wage growth also continued to strengthen. Pay, including bonuses, rose by 3pc in the quarter to August compared with the same period a year earlier, following growth of 2.9pc in the three months to July. This represents the strongest growth in more than five years.
Excluding bonus payments, pay growth eased to 2.8pc, from 2.9pc in July, according to the ONS.
In the three months to August, workers’ total earnings, including bonuses, were up 3% from a year earlier – slightly less than expected.
Excluding bonuses, growth in average weekly earnings slowed slightly to 2.8%. Rising pay is a factor used by the Bank of England in considering when to start raising interest rates.
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