Scottish employment rate hits joint record high with pre-covid figures

Figures show employment for women between 16 to 64 is at a record high with wider figures matching 2019 statistics.

Scottish employment rate hits joint record high with pre-covid figures, according to ONS iStock

The employment rate across Scotland is at the highest rate since 2019, new figures reveal.

For people aged 16 to 64, the employment rate hit 75.9% between August and October, up 0.7% on the previous three month period.

The figures, which have been released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS), were the joint highest since the labour force survey series began in 1992, with the employment rate last reaching 75.9% in February to April 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic.

For women within the same age group, the employment rate over the latest quarter was the highest since records began.

However, the statistics also reveal that unemployment increased slightly last quarter.

Between August and October, the unemployment rate among those aged 16 and over was 3.3%, which was 0.2% up on the previous three months.

This was below the UK-wide unemployment rate of 3.7%, which was 0.1% up on the previous quarter.

In Scotland, there were 2.725 million people aged 16 and over in employment between August and October, while 93,000 in that age group were unemployed.

Scotland’s employment minister, Richard Lochhead, said: “Although the latest GDP data showed a contraction in the economy during the third quarter of 2022, the employment rate for August to October 2022 increased to a joint record high.

“This is against the backdrop of the serious challenges which businesses are facing from the cost crisis, high inflation, the continued impact of Brexit and the economic consequences of Russia’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.

“Through our Fair Work policy we are supporting development of a labour market that is open and inclusive, while the ambitious National Strategy for Economic Transformation is helping deliver high-quality and sustainable jobs in the green economy.

“Yesterday the PwC UK Green Jobs Barometer confirmed more green jobs have been created in Scotland than any other part of the UK.

“Priorities for Thursday’s Scottish Budget 2023-24 include helping families and public services through the cost-of-living crisis and transforming the economy to deliver net zero.”

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