The number of people in full-time employment has continued to grow since 2013 but average weekly real earnings have still not recovered to their pre-economic crash levels. In other words, weekly earnings today buy less than they did more than a decade ago.
2.1 Unemployment continues to decline and remains at lower levels than before the economic crash of 2008/9. But, in 2019, there are still 1.3 million people out of work who are available for, and actively seeking, a job. Nearly 350,000 of those 1.3 million have been in this position for a year or longer.
Source: ONS (January figures taken)
2.2 Taking 2006 as a baseline, the number of people in full-time employment has continued to grow, at pace, since 2013. This reverses the decline in full-time employment seen between 2009 and 2013. Self-employment and part-time work continue to grow but not at the same pace as full-time employment.
2.3 Since 2011, there has been a particularly significant increase in the percentage of women aged 60-64 who are in employment, no doubt due in large part to changes in the state pension age for this group taking place from 2010.
2.4 The rapid growth in zero hour contracts, witnessed since 2012, has now stabilised at nearly 1 million people on such contracts.
2.5 Over the last year, average weekly real earnings grew to almost reach the pre-financial crash peak but the most recent data shows a drop to £465 per week in February 2019 so wages have still not quite recovered to their pre-crash levels.