Number of people in work at record high

New official figures published today, show that unemployment in the Scottish Borders is falling and that across the UK the number of people in work was at a record high.

Adjusting for the roll out of Universal Credit, which requires a broader group of benefit claimants to look for work, the number of claimants in Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk has fallen, based on the latest set of figures.

And across the UK, unemployment fell by 35,000 to 1.34 million in the period, putting the rate below 4% for the first time since 1975. The number of people in the UK in work and the employment rate are now the highest since records began.

The figures published today for the Scottish Borders show the number of unemployed claimants in March 2018 has risen by 85 since February. However, this is due to the roll out of Universal Credit, because under the new system a broader group of benefit claimants are required to look for work.

Local MP John Lamont has said these figures are yet again more good economic news for the UK, which show that despite Brexit, the economy remains strong.

Commenting, John Lamont MP said: “This is reassuring news in the face of all political uncertainty going on at the moment. Despite everything that is said about the damage Brexit is doing, the UK and Scottish economies remain strong and employment is at record levels.

“When these figures are adjusted to take into account the roll out of Universal Credit, unemployment remains low in the Borders and is in fact falling.

“With more than two-thirds of these new jobs full-time and wages now growing faster than inflation, this is a sign that people are moving from benefits to good, secure jobs.

“There is clearly more work to be done to bring better paid jobs to the Borders. However, this news shows that our local and national economies remain strong, despite Brexit.”