From the TUC

UK has a ‘jobs gap’ of 158,000

16 Aug 2011, by in Labour market

New TUC analysis published ahead of the latest unemployment statistics shows that the UK has a ‘jobs gap’ – the number of people employed today minus employment levels on the eve of the recession in December 2007 – of 158,000.

Employment levels across the UK in April 2011 (the latest available figures) are down 0.5% on December 2007 although there is considerable variation across the country. Employment is up 122,000 (+3.3%) in London but down 70,000 (-2.8%) in the West Midlands.

The number of people in work is higher than pre-recession levels in London, the East of England and the East Midlands, while the North East, West Midlands and the South West have the widest jobs gaps.

The analysis shows that there were 41,000 more women working in April 2011 than December 2007, and there are 199,000 fewer men in employment.

But in some regions women are still facing a jobs gap –  the gap for women is worst in the North East where employment is down 5.1% (28,000 jobs) on pre-recession levels – while female employment in London is up 4.3% (70,000 jobs).

The largest jobs gap for men is in Yorkshire and Humber at 4.3% (57,000 jobs) while London has again improved the most with 52,000 more jobs across the capital.

While the national jobs gap has closed by 50,000 since the start of the year, the number of women in work has not increased at all. Female employment has risen in just three regions in England in 2011 – East Midlands, East of England and London. This suggests that improvements in the female ‘jobs gap’ may not be sustained in the year ahead.

The UK ‘jobs gap’ would be almost twice as large were it not for the employment growth in London. The surge in employment across the capital is not evenly spread however, with the number of dole claimants outnumbering job vacancies by over 20 to 1 in Haringey, Lewisham, Waltham Forest and Hackney.

And as the size of the working age population has increased since the start of the recession the jobs gap only tells part of the story – in all areas of the UK employment rates remain below their pre-recession levels.

Summary of our analysis  

Jobs gap

  Employment (000s)    
Region Dec 2007 Jan 2011 April 2011 Jobs gap Jobs gap (%)
North East 1,168 1,127 1,132 -36,000 -3.1
Yorkshire and Humber 2,463 2,410 2,403 -60,000 -2.4
North West 3,180 3,153 3,120 -60,000 -1.9
East Midlands 2,139 2,123 2,146 +7,000 +0.3
West Midlands 2,501 2,407 2,431 -70,000 -2.8
East of England 2,821 2,840 2861 40,000 1.4
London 3,729 3,846 3,851 122,000 3.3
South East 4,201 4,197 4,184 -17,000 -0.4
South West 2,573 2,530 2,506 -67,000 -2.6
UK 29,437 29,229 29,279 -158,000 -0.5

 Male jobs gap

  Employment level (000s)    
Region Dec 2007 Jan 2011 April 2011 Jobs gap Jobs gap (%)
North East 618 598 610 -8,000 1.3
Yorkshire & Humber 1,332 1,280 1,275 -57,000 -4.3
North West 1,709 1,684 1,664 -45,000 -2.6
East Midlands 1,157 1,151 1,164 7,000 0.6
West Midlands 1,361 1,284 1,310 -51,000 -3.7
East of England 1,529 1,539 1,541 12,000 0.8
London 2,088 2,155 2,140 52,000 2.5
South East 2,261 2,243 2,252 -9,000 -0.4
South West 1,383 1,345 1,329 -54,000 -3.9
UK 15,912 15,663 15,713 -199,000 -1.3

 Female jobs gap 

  Employment level    
Region Dec 2007 Jan 2011 April 2011 Jobs gap Jobs gap (%)
North East 550 529 522 -28,000 -5.1
Yorkshire and Humber 1,131 1,130 1,128 -3,000 -0.3
North West 1,470 1,469 1,456 -14,000 -1.0
East Midlands 982 972 982 0 0.0
West Midlands 1,140 1,123 1,122 -18,000 -1.6
East of England 1,293 1,301 1,320 27,000 2.1
London 1,641 1,692 1,711 70,000 4.3
South East 1,940 1,954 1,932 -8,000 -0.4
South West 1,190 1,185 1,177 -13,000 -1.1
UK 13,525 13,566 13,566 41,000 0.3

Source: Office for National Statistics 

To download our full analysis as an Excel worksheet

3 Responses to UK has a ‘jobs gap’ of 158,000

  1. Anthony Cooper
    Aug 16th 2011, 8:38 am

    What’s the relationship between this “jobs gap” and unemployment?

  2. The job market is stagnating across the board | Left Foot Forward
    Aug 17th 2011, 4:38 pm

    […] we are still quite a way from recovering to pre-recession levels of employment. As my colleague Anjum Klair has pointed out, the UK still has fewer people in employment than in December 2007, on the eve of […]

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    Aug 20th 2011, 10:33 am

    […] Klair at the TUC’s Touchstone Blog says that the UK’s ‘jobs gap’ now numbers 158,000 and on Wednesday, The Staggers’ George Eaton has some further bad news from […]