Driven by data; ridden with liberty.
The Office for National Statistics have released their latest round of labour market statistics. This edition covers December 2015 to February 2016 .
There were 31.41 million people in work, which is 20,000 more than for September to November 2015 and 360,000 more than in December 2014 to February 2015. The employment rate — the proportion of people aged from 16 to 64 who were in work — was 74.1%, which is the joint highest rate since comparable records began in 1971.
Unemployment rose by 21,000 to 1.696m, from September to November 2015. Since last year, unemployment fell by 142,000. The headline rate of unemployment rose from 5.0% to 5.1% since the previous quarter, but has fallen from 5.6% since last year.
Whilst unemployment has certainly had one direction of travel in the past five years, that fall has not been uniform nor persistent. Unemployment has risen in some months, and the question becomes whether unemployment has now hit a valley.
Estimates of youth unemployment have barely moved in the past four months.
 ONS, 2016. UK Labour Market: April 2016. Available from: http://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/employmentandemployeetypes/bulletins/uklabourmarket/april2016 [Accessed: 20th April 2016]