Monthly data on employment, unemployment and economic inactivity.
Headline labour market indicators, 3 months to March 2021
The headline labour market indicators estimated from the Labour Force Survey (LFS) provide an indication of how the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is affecting the labour market. Other data sources, such as the number of paid employees presented later in this headline, can also be used to produce a more complete picture.
LFS responses are weighted to official population projections. As the current projections are 2018-based they are based on demographic trends that pre-date the COVID-19 pandemic. Rates published from the LFS remain robust; however, levels and changes in levels should be used with caution. The Office for National Statistics have published a methodology paper outlining that they intend to re-weight the Labour Force Survey using population estimates from PAYE real-time information. This will be applied to LFS results from July 2021.
The employment rate in Wales was 74.0%. This is 1.8 percentage points up on the quarter but unchanged over the year.
The UK employment rate was 75.2%. This is 0.2 percentage points up on the quarter and 1.2 percentage points down on the year, one of the largest annual decreases in employment rate since January to March 2010.
The unemployment rate in Wales was 4.4%. This is unchanged over the quarter and 1.2 percentage points up on the year.
The UK unemployment rate was 4.8%. This is 0.3 percentage points down on the quarter and 0.8 percentage points up on the year. October to December showed the largest annual increase in the unemployment rate (1.3 percentage points) since October to December 2009.
Economic inactivity rate
The economic inactivity rate in Wales was 22.5%. This is 1.8 percentage points down on the quarter and 0.9 percentage points down on the year. This is the largest quarterly decrease since records began in 1992.
The UK economic inactivity rate was 21.0%. This is 0.1 percentage points up on the quarter and 0.6 percentage points up on the year. This is the joint second largest annual increase since February to April 2010.
Monthly paid employees and earnings from Pay As You Earn Real Time Information
The Office for National Statistics and HM Revenue & Customs publish data for Wales on payrolled employees, mean pay, aggregate pay and single month estimates for median pay.
The number of paid employees has generally increased in recent years, but has fallen during the pandemic.
Early estimates for April 2021 indicate that the number of paid employees in Wales was 1.23 million. This was a decrease of 32,900 (2.6%) on February 2020, but a slight increase of 4,100 (0.3%) compared with the lowest point in November 2020.
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