Unemployment down for the third month in a row but total is still 14,000 more than a year ago
The number of people unemployed in Scotland has fallen for the third consecutive month according to latest official figures.
Figures compiled by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) covering February to April show the number of Scots out of work and not eligible for benefits fell by 14,000 and now stands at 220,000.
The figure means 8.2 per cent of the available workforce in Scotland is currently out of work, in line with figures for the UK as a whole.
And although the unemployment figure represents a fall in unemployment compared with the previous quarter, the total figure is still 14,000 higher than a year ago.
Scotland's employment rate increased by 18,000 in the quarter to 2,481,000, and Scotland has a higher rate of employment than the rest of the UK at 71.1 per cent against 70.6 per cent.
However, the number of people claiming unemployment benefits in Scotland rose by 400 between April and May and the total figure – 142,600 – is 2,500 more than reported for the same quarterly period last year.
And there are currently 86,000 16 to 24-year-olds out of work, putting the Scottish youth unemployment rate at 21.3 per cent.