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UK employment grew in Q1 2016 to its highest level since 1971. The number of employed people reached 31.58 million in January-March 2016, which is 44,000 more than the period October-December 2015 and 409,000 more than in the first quarter of last year. The experts from National Statistics Office see no compelling evidence that the forthcoming referendum on EU membership of the country creates a downward pressure on employment. The rate of employment reached another record level, but this time the increase is modest.

the unemployment remains almost unchanged and this is evidence that the labor market may be weakening. The unemployment rate is 5.1%, same as Q1 2015, but lower than the same period last year (5.6%).

Wages, including bonuses, grew by 2% in Q1 2016, which is more than the value in February of 1.9% and above economists’ expectations. The increase in weekly wages without bonuses slowed from 2.2% to 2.1%.

Although labor market conditions tightened sharply in the past year, wages remain below pre-crisis levels too low to stimulate inflation.

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