“The latest employment figures underline the continuing strength of the UK’s flexible labour market and its ability to create jobs. The record number of people in employment and further reduction in unemployment also provide some much needed confidence in the health of the economy, particularly now the UK faces a period of uncertainty ahead of negotiations over its exit from the EU. The fall in unemployment for young people is especially welcome. However, it should be noted that most of the increase has come from more full time self-employed, with relatively little growth in employee employment.

“It is too early to say what effect the vote to leave the EU will have on employers’ recruitment and redundancy intentions over the next few months, but today’s figures at least provide some reassurance that the UK’s labour market is robust and had positive momentum before the referendum vote.

“Pay remains stable, with average weekly earnings increasing by 2.2% excluding bonuses, suggesting that a figure of about 2% is becoming the new normal.”