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MNI (London)

The UK unemployment rate is seen edging lower again in April, as it continues to defy the worst fears of the early pandemic days, helped in part by the government's continuing furlough scheme. The rate is expected to dip to 4.7% from 4.8% in March, with an additional 135,000 jobs added in the rolling three months. The May claimant count is expected to fall to 7% from 7.2% in April.

Wages are also seen higher again, with average total pay expected to jump to 4.9% from 4.0% in March. Total pay ex bonuses is expected to jump to 5.3%, the highest rate in twenty years.

The April KPMG/REC survey saw permanent job placements surge to the highest level since 1997, while temporary billings rose to the greatest extent since October 2014. The demand for staff rebounded sharply as well, with vacancies rising at the steepest rate in 23 years. This results in upward pressure on starting salaries.

The ONS will publish the latest data at 0700BST Tuesday.

UK Earnings ex-bonus monthly growth rate

Source: Bloomberg

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