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Record high for employment levels

Published: Thursday, 17 April 2008   Category: Life after graduation

The number of people in employment has hit a record high of 29.5 million, new statistics have shown.

Data from the Office for National Statistics has indicated the biggest yearly increase in employment levels since 1997.

The employment rate for people of working age was 74.9 per cent for the three months to February this year, up 0.2 per cent from the previous quarter and a 0.6 per cent increase over the year.

According to the figures, some 7.89 million people over the age of 50 are continuing to work, which accounts for nearly half of the annual increase.

Employment minister Stephen Timms said the statistics illustrate a "strong performance" despite the ramifications of the credit crunch.

"The economy is benefiting from the skill and expertise that people aged over 50 are bringing to the workforce and we are continuing to ensure that our welfare reforms provide greater opportunities for people across all walks of life to get into work if they want to," he commented.


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