The number of temporary employees in the UK fell by 3.1% on a seasonally adjusted basis to a total of 1.55 million in the three-month period from November through to January 2018 when compared to the same period a year ago, according to the Office for National Statistics.
Temporary workers are self-identified when surveyed by the ONS, and they include those who are on fixed-period contracts, agency temp workers, casual workers, seasonal workers and others in temporary work.
Figures from ONS also showed that the unemployment rate stood at 4.3% for the period from November to January 2018, down from 4.7% for a year earlier and the joint lowest since 1975. There were 1.45 million unemployed people (people not in work but seeking and available to work), 127,000 fewer than for a year earlier.
The employment rate (the proportion of people aged from 16 to 64 who were in work) was 75.3%, higher than for a year earlier (74.6%) and the joint highest since comparable records began in 1971.
For November 2017 to January 2018, the youth unemployment rate (16- to 24-year-olds) was 12.3%, little changed compared with a year earlier.
Meanwhile, there were 816,000 job vacancies for December 2017 to February 2018. This was 56,000 more than for a year earlier.
For November 2017 to January 2018, 102,000 people had become redundant in the three months before the Labour Force Survey, 14,000 fewer than for a year earlier.
The latest ONS estimates showed that average weekly earnings for employees in the UK in nominal terms (not adjusted for price inflation) increased by 2.6% excluding bonuses, and by 2.8% including bonuses, compared with a year earlier.
Average weekly earnings for employees in real terms (adjusted for price inflation) fell by 0.2% excluding bonuses, but were unchanged including bonuses, compared with a year earlier.