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UK real time payrolls rose by 197,000 in May, a record-high rise in a series dating back to July 2014, leaving employment 553,000 below pre-pandemic levels, data released Tuesday by the Office for National Statistics noted. According to LFS data, employment rose by 113,000 in the three months to April, taking the jobless rate down to 4.7% from 4.8% in the first quarter.

Vacancies rose by 146,600 in the three months to May (versus Dec-Feb) to 758,000, taking the total to just 27,000 below pre-pandemic levels. Average hours steadied at 30.0 in the three months to April, unchanged from the first quarter, below the 32.0 average through 2019.