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Job vacancies fall for eighth time in a row

Fiona Kyle
March 14, 2023

The number of job vacancies in the UK has fallen for the eighth time in a row, the latest figures show.

There were 51,000 fewer vacancies available between December and February compared with the previous three months.

Despite the fall, there is still a high number of jobs available, with the current amount of job vacancies standing at 1.1 million. That's 328,000 more vacancies than the pre-pandemic period of January to March 2020.

The rate of economic activity (which is people of a working age who are not in work or looking for a job) fell to 21.3% between November and January as more young people either found jobs or were looking for work.

There are currently nine million economically inactive people in the UK who are either students, have retired or are suffering from long-term illness.

On Wednesday, Chancellor Jeremy Hunt will announce the new budget which will include the government's plan to get people back into work. This is expected to include a boost to the amount that people can save for their pensions before it is taxed. Help with the cost of childcare is another issue that may be addressed.

The growth in average salary appears to be stalling. Last year the average weekly salary rose by almost £3 per month. In January 2023 this had fallen to £1.

Taking inflation into account, the average salary fell by 2.4% in the three months to January compared with the same period last year.

Director of Economic Statistics at the ONS, Darren Morgan, said: "Although the inflation rate has come down a little, it's still outstripping earnings growth, meaning real pay continues to fall."