Employment Rate Has Never Been Higher As Worker’s Wages Grow

Torbay’s MP Kevin Foster has welcomed official ONS figures showing that in the South West there are now 2,845,071 people in work, meaning 350,755 more people have been able to access the security of a job compared to 2010

The figures also confirm there are more people with a full-time job than ever before and the employment rate is at a joint record high. Wages are also rising at their fastest pace in more than 11 years, ahead of inflation for 18 months in a row, worker’s pay packets are also going further.

In Torbay Constituency, the number of people who are claiming key out-of-work benefits has fallen by 697 since 2010, an overall reduction of -27% per cent.

These figures show the underlying strengths of our economy – with millions of people benefitting from a sustained boost in pay and access to a regular pay cheque.


Kevin Foster MP has welcomed these figures, saying:

“These figures show across the South West and here in our bay more people are getting into work, with a record number of people in full-time work more households are benefitting from the security of a regular wage.”

“Families across the country are also benefitting from a sustained boost in their wages, which will be welcome news in many households.”

Jesse Norman, Financial Secretary to the Treasury, said:

“These are another remarkable set of jobs figures. Wages are now rising at an average of 4% and faster than prices, meaning people’s pay can go further.

“With more people than ever before in full-time jobs and long-term unemployment halving, more people have the security of a regular wage and can provide for their families.

“Boris Johnson and the Conservatives will continue to ensure the fundamentals of our economy are strong. Labour would wreck our economy and put people’s livelihoods at risk.”



For further information, please contact the Press Office on 020 7984 8121.

Notes to Editors:

  • Wages: Average weekly earnings for employees increased by 4.0 per cent compared with a year earlier – growing by 2.1 per cent after adjusting for inflation – meaning people have more money in their pockets.
  • Full-time employment: There are a record number of people working full-time (24.17 million – 74 per cent of the workforce). This has increased by 2.95 million since 2010.
  • Employment:78 million (up 369,000 over the last year and up by 3.73 million since 2010).
  • Employment rate: A joint record high of 76.1 per cent (up 0.6 points over the past year and up 5.9 points since 2010).
  • Unemployment:29 million (down 64,000 over the past year and down by 1.22 million since 2010).


  • Unemployment rate:8 per cent (down 0.2 points over the past year and down 4.2 points since 2010) –more than halving since 2010 (8.0 per cent).


  • Youth unemployment: There are 451,000 fewer young people out of work since 2010 – almost halving since 2010.


  • Female employment: The number of women in work is 15.52 million – and the employment rate for women is at a record high of 72.1 per cent. There are 1.89 million more women in work since 2010.


(ONS, Labour Market Overview, 10 September 2019, link).




  • There are currently 32.78 million people in work in the United Kingdom, an increase of 3.73 million people since the Conservatives came into government in 2010. Every region throughout the United Kingdom has experienced an increase in employment, as shown in the table below.


Region or Nation

Number of people in work

Change since 2010

United Kingdom



Great Britain






North East



North West



Yorkshire and The Humber



East Midlands



West Midlands









South East



South West









Northern Ireland




  • Employment figures relate to May 2019 to July 2019 and the change since 2010 compares these figures to February to April period of 2010, which are available regionally on the Nomis website (Nomis, Economically Active time series, accessed 10 September 2019, link).




  • On 10 September 2019, constituency claimant count figures for August 2019 were published. The below table is composed of Claimant Count (Jobseekers Allowance and Universal Credit, not in work) available on the Nomis website (Nomis, Economically Active time series, 10 September 2019, link).  


  • Data from 2010 is available on Nomis. The figures in this dataset come from the Labour Force Survey. As such they will be consistent with the headline labour market statistics published by the ONS each month (NOMIS, Annual population survey, accessed 10 September 2019, link).