This morning’s report from the Resolution Foundation on the employment surge since the financial crisis is a healthy rejoinder to those who are pessimistic about the state of the British economy.
The Conservatives make great play of their record on job creation, and well they might given that there are 2.7 million more people in work now than in 2008 and the headline employment rate has never been higher.
To listen to some, not least Jeremy Corbyn, all the jobs created since the coalition government came to power are insecure, part-time, gig economy roles, probably in the service of some faceless Californian venture capitalist.
Leaders of the Opposition are entitled to paint as dramatic a picture as they like of the Government’s failings, but today’s stats suggest Corbyn is just plain wrong. Far from just being low-paid jobs the trend since the financial crisis has been one of “occupational upgrading” — though Clarke and Cominetti point out that the growth in better paid jobs actually goes back to the turn of the millennium.
The authors also note that “record employment has been progressive. Rising employment has helped support household incomes over the past seven years, offsetting, and in part representing a response to, a significant loss of earnings power and cuts in state support”.