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15.06.2016 09:22

U.K. unemployment rate declines to 5.0% in the February to April quarter, the lowest level since October 2005

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) released its labour market data on Wednesday. The U.K. unemployment rate declined to 5.0% in the February to April quarter from 5.1% in the January to March quarter. It was the lowest level since October 2005.

Analysts had expected the unemployment rate to remain unchanged.

The claimant count fell by 400 people in May, beating expectations for a decrease by 100, after an increase of 6,400 people in April. April's figure was revised down from a 2,400 fall.

U.K. unemployment in the February to April period was 1.67 million, down 20,000 compared with January to March.

The employment rate was 74.2% in the February to April quarter. It was the highest reading since 1971.

Average weekly earnings, excluding bonuses, climbed by 2.3% in the February to April quarter, exceeding expectations for a 2.1% rise, after a 2.2% gain in the January to March quarter. The previous quarter's figure was revised up from a 2.1% rise.

Average weekly earnings, including bonuses, rose by 2.0% in the February to April quarter, exceeding expectations for a 1.7% gain, after a 2.0% increase in the January to March quarter.

The Bank of England monitors closely the wages growth it considers when to start hiking its interest rate.

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