Toll soars of ever-jobless households

The number of households in which no one has ever had a job has almost doubled in the last 13 years, new figures have revealed.

Between 1997 and 2010, the number of homes whose occupants have never worked jumped from 184,000 to 352,000, according to a report by the Office For National Statistics (ONS).

This equates to 1.7 per cent of all households, a rise from one per cent in 1997.

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According to the study, Inner London has the highest proportion of jobless homes in the UK, with 6.5 per cent of households never completing a day’s work.

The figure is three times more than the next highest area, Outer London, which has 2.2 per cent.

Families in the East of England were found to have the lowest rates with 0.5 per cent of households never having worked.

They were followed by 0.8 per cent in the South West and 0.9 per cent in the South East.

The latest ONS Social Trends report, which analyses the UK labour market, also found that the employment rate for women has risen 13 per cent in the last 40 years.

It grew from 53 per cent in the second quarter of 1971 to 66 per cent in the first quarter of this year, slightly below the 2006 peak of 67 per cent.

Male employment rates have dipped by 16 per cent since 1971, where 92 per cent of men were in work.