The number of people out of work fell by 60,000 to 1.69 million between October and December, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) has said.

It means the unemployment rate remains at 5.1% - the lowest it has been for 10 years. And with a 205,000 more people in employment during the three months, there are more people in work since records began in 1971.

Pay grew 2% over the year, up slightly from 1.9% in the previous quarter. But that still wasn't high enough, according to ONS statistician Nick Palmer. He said: "While the employment rate continues to hit new highs and there are more job vacancies than ever previously recorded, earnings growth remains subdued and markedly below the recent peak of mid-2015."

James Sproule, chief economist at the Institute of Directors, said: “The UK’s strong employment remains one of the few bright spots in a world where there are an increasing number of economic uncertainties. Wage growth may appear modest in nominal terms, but this could be a feature of impressive increases in the number of young people who are in work. Moreover, with inflation still in the doldrums, real wage growth is providing a boost to employees and underpinning the UK’s consumer-led growth throughout 2016. But don’t bank on the lines continuing to go in right direction for ever."