With economic recovery continuing, the labour market in the UK remains very strong, with 1,034,000 unfilled job vacancies in July 2021 – a record number.

The unemployment rate is currently around 4.6%, so there are few potential recruits available. EU Exit has made it much harder for UK businesses to recruit from overseas and so wages are rising fast.

There are about 8.7m people in the UK classed as “economically inactive” – this group outnumbers the 1.6m that are “unemployed” (ie: not working, but actively looking for work and ready to begin at once).

The economically inactive are a diverse group, comprising students, the sick, carers, retirees and others. The group has grown in recent years, with increasing numbers of students being

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