Unemployment in the UK fell by 51,000 to 2.61 million in the three months to April, official figures have shown.
The jobless rate fell to 8.2%, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said.
But the claimant count – the number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance – increased by 8,100 in May compared with April, to 1.60 million.
The ONS said the unemployment level in the UK overall was “showing some improvement”.
Most of the decrease in the headline unemployment figure was made up of men. Female unemployment fell by only 1,000.
Youth unemployment fell by 29,000 to just over one million.
The ONS added there were decreases in unemployment across all age groups, except for the over-65s.
Overall, there were 29.28 million people in work, up 166,000 on the previous quarter. That was the largest quarterly increase since August 2010.
The ONS also pointed out that whereas in previous months, the rise in employment had been led by part-time workers, this month the increase was fairly evenly spread between part-time and full-time workers.
“This time we’re seeing a very healthy increase in full-time jobs and that’s clearly very welcome,” Employment Minister Chris Grayling said.
But he added: “Any fall in unemployment is very welcome, but I remain cautious over the next few months, given the continuing economic challenges we face.”