By Daniel Hunter

Data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has revealed that the number of unemployed in the UK fell by 18,000 in the June-August period to 2.49 million.

The official figures show that the unemployment rate remains unchanged at 7.7% from the previous three months.

The figures also show the number of people claiming Jobseeker's Allowance last month fell by 41,700 to 1.35 million.

The ONS also reports that average earnings rose by 0.7% in the year to August, 0.5% down on July.

“The UK job market is stepping up a gear. Available jobs are on the up, and salary growth is beginning to gather pace after a sluggish couple of years. Employers are building up their teams in order to capitalise on the wider economic recovery," Andrew Hunter, co-founder of Adzuna, commented.

"Unemployment has fallen for the second month in a row, and around the country, job hunters are feeling more confident about their chances of finding work.

“But a word of caution: wages may be slowly creeping back up, but they are still being outpaced by inflation, and many UK employees are still to feel a difference in their wallets. It’s especially hard for graduates, who have seen their average starting salary drop over 10% year-on-year in many parts of the country.

"In addition, the job market still shows some strong regional disparities. In some areas of the UK finding a job is highly competitive. Our research has found that the ratio of job vacancies to applicants is generally more favourable in the South — of the ten best UK cities to find a job, only one was in the North.”

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