Scottish Unemployment Down by 15,000

July 15, 2015

The number of Scottish men and women who are unemployed fell by 15,000 in the three months from the beginning of March to the end of May.

According to the latest official numbers, there were 152,000 people in Scotland classed as being unemployed by early June, with that figure representing a drop of 32,000 from the same point of the year in 2014.

The Scottish government has welcomed the figures and expressed a particular satisfaction in seeing a fall in levels of youth unemployment around the country, which reached a new six-year low in the second quarter of the year.

“These figures show a growing economy and falling unemployment – both extremely encouraging indicators and signs that the economic picture in Scotland is continuing to improve,” said Annabelle Ewing, a Scottish minister for youth and women’s employment.

“The 20,000 fall over the year in youth unemployment also means 20,000 more young people are now benefitting from the rewards and opportunities of work – something we are determined to improve on even further,” she said.

Scotland’s unemployment rate now sits at 5.5 per cent of the overall work-age population, with the number of people who are employed nationwide reportedly having risen by roughly 1,000 in the second quarter.

By most measures Scotland appears to be outperforming the rest of the UK when it comes to employment with the overall number of Britons registered as being unemployed rising by 15,000 between March and June.

Ms Ewing noted that Scotland has seen particularly strong performance within its construction sector in recent quarters, with the Scottish economy as a whole currently growing at a quarterly rate of 0.6 per cent.

“As our economy continues to grow, we will use every power we currently have at our disposal to grow the economy even further, increase employment, lower unemployment and remove barriers to the labour market,” she said.

Meanwhile, the UK government’s Scottish secretary David Mundell suggested that reduced unemployment in Scotland represents a vindication of the Conservative Party’s economic policies and its efforts to create a “better more prosperous future for the whole of the country”.

John Baird

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