IPSE responds to continued labour market strength

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IPSE, the Association of Independent Professionals and the Self Employed, has responded to today’s employment figures showing the continued resilience of the UK labour market. Self-employment in particular has continued to rise, showing the growing desire for flexible working solutions.

The figures, released by the ONS today, show that there are now 325,000 more people in work than the same time last year. Of these, 50,000 are people who have started working for themselves. Self-employment has now grown continuously for seven years, and this trend is expected to continue.

Tom Purvis, IPSE’s Political and Economic Advisor, commented: “Self-employment is continuing to break records in the UK labour market, and is predicted to overtake public sector employment in the next decade.

“Despite the continuing strength of the UK labour market, however, there are still problems. The figures released today show that earnings (including bonuses) have grown by just 2.5 per cent, meaning that incomes are still not keeping pace with rising inflation. 

“With more people in self-employment than ever before and incomes still not matching rising costs, the Chancellor should provide more support and protection for the vulnerable self-employed, who will be feeling this cost-of-living squeeze more than most. As a new report by IPSE and Community shows, between nine and 13 per cent of the self-employed population are at risk of being vulnerable.

“The report looks at ways to help and support these people, including through reforms to Universal Credit, added protection against late payments and improving access to training. By taking up these suggestions and helping the self-employed population, the Government can deliver a message to the British people that it supports the flexibility that a lot of people want. We urge the Government to take note and act on our proposals.”

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