Image: Unemployed/Employed via Shutterstock
In February – April 2017, Scotland’s unemployment rate fell again for the third month in a row and the gap with the rest of the UK has grown. Scotland’s rate in 4.0%, down from 4.4%. The rest of the UK figure remains at 4.6% as in the last quarter. This is the lowest rate since 2008. According to the Scottish Business News Network, the following positive comparisons can also be made:
- Scotland’s employment rate increased by 0.3 percentage points over the quarter to 74.1% – the second highest employment rate out of the four UK nations [with London included in the English figures] – with the employment level rising by 14,000.
• Over the year, Scotland’s employment rate increased by 0.9 percentage points, with the employment level rising by 44,000.
• Scotland continued to outperform the UK on female employment rates (70.6% vs. 70.2%), and Scotland’s female unemployment rate was also lower than the UK’s (4.1% vs. 4.4%).
• Scotland’s youth employment rate also outperformed the UK (57.1% vs. 54.1%), while Scotland’s youth unemployment rate was also lower than the UK’s (8.8% vs. 11.5%).
Note that with London excluded, Scotland has the highest employment rate of all four UK nations. Note also, the likely role of the Scottish Government’s £500 million Scottish Growth Scheme and £6 billion infrastructure plan in enabling this growth.
This is continuing evidence of the relative good health of the Scottish economy. Had it been otherwise, we can be sure the SNP-led government would be blamed so they must take some credit for this good news.
Wider evidence of growing health in the Scottish economy can be found in these links to earlier pieces: