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Employment rate

Proportion of working age population in employment

Labour Market Newcastle North Tyneside South Tyneside Durham Gateshead Sunderland Northumberland
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The latest North East employment rate

This rate measures the proportion of the working age population who are in work.  The 16 to 64 age group is used as a proxy for working age to allow for historical and international comparisons.

People in employment include employees, self-employed people, unpaid family workers and those on Government supported training & employment programmes.

The latest local labour market statistics are based on responses to the Annual Population Survey (APS) across the 2023 calendar year. In that period:

  • About 73% of the North East 16-64 population was in employment
  • the North East rate was 2.6 percentage points (pp) higher than a year earlier and at its highest level since comparable data started in 2004
  • the England excluding London rate was higher but the gap had recently narrowed 
  • the North East rate was the fourth highest among the eight English core city areas
  • at local authority level, the highest North East rate was in Gateshead and the lowest was in South Tyneside
  • at constituency level, the employment rate was highest in Newcastle upon Tyne North.

Employment by sex and age

In 2023 in the North East, among those aged 16 to 64 :

  • Just over 70% of females and almost 76% of males were in employment
  • both of these rates were at their highest level since the start of comparable data in 2004
  • the female rate continued to be lower than the male rate and the gap widened in the latest year
  • both the female and male North East rates weres highest among 35 to 49 year-olds
  • North East rates were lower than those for England excluding London for six of the eight categories. The exceptions were rates for females and males aged 16 to 24
  • the largest net increases in North East employment in the latest year were among females aged 16 to 24 and among males aged 35 to 49.