Working-age workless households within the UK

The working-age workless household rate has decreased over the past 20 years across the whole UK, despite a rise after the 2008/09 recession.

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Link to source: Labour Force Survey

The percentage of working-age households with no one in employment has decreased across the UK during the past 20 years. The decreases in Wales and Scotland have been particularly striking, closing a large part of the gap with England (which has always had the lowest level). The decrease has been smaller in Northern Ireland (down by less than 1 percentage point) than elsewhere (down by between 5 and 7 percentage points).

The decreases in workless households in the last five years were larger than in other periods but these followed increases after the 2008/09 recession. In Scotland and Northern Ireland in particular, the current rate is similar to that in 2007.

For this analysis, working-age households are defined as those that contain at least one person aged 16 to 64.