Scots unemployment again below UK rate

Scotland’s unemployment rate rose 0.3% to 4.1% in the June to August quarter — but is still below the UK rate of 4.3%.

The number of Scots unemployed rose 9,000 to 113,000.

Scotland’s employment rate grew to 75.3% over the June to August quarter, above the UK rate of 75.1% , meaning there are now 2,655,000 people aged 16 years and above in employment.

Over the quarter, Scotland’s female employment rate increased to 72.0%, higher than the UK rate of 70.7%.

Over the year youth unemployment decreased by 1.6 percentage points to 10.6%, lower than the UK at 13.3%.

The Scottish government’s Minster for Employability and Training Jamie Hepburn said: “These latest employment figures are encouraging and are among the highest on record with 2,655,000 people in work in Scotland.

“Scotland has higher employment rates and lower unemployment rates than the UK with 91,000 more people in employment compared to the pre-recession peak.

“Youth unemployment rates continue to outperform the UK. This comes on top of us fulfilling our commitment to reduce youth unemployment by 40%, four years ahead of schedule.

“While these figures are positive we recognise there are still many barriers to getting people into work and are continuing to work to improve labour market conditions.

“We are expanding the range of opportunities available to young people through our Apprenticeship programme and recently announced £96 million of investment to deliver fairer employment support services through the new Fair Start Scotland programme.

“Today’s figures show the Scottish economy continues to perform well against a difficult backdrop with the lack of clarity from the UK Government on Brexit and proposals to leave the world’s biggest single market posing the single biggest threat to our economy.”