Unemployment falls to five-year low

ENCOURAGING ... Coun Michael Clare has welcomed news that unemployment is falling in South Tyneside.

ENCOURAGING ... Coun Michael Clare has welcomed news that unemployment is falling in South Tyneside.

UNEMPLOYMENT has fallen again in South Tyneside, with the lowest claimant count in more than five years.

A total of 5,402 people claimed Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) in March, compared with 5,661 in February.

This amounts to 259 fewer people on the dole locally, bringing down the percentage of the local working age population claiming JSA from 6.0 per cent to 5.7 per cent.

But although there has been a slight fall in local youth unemployment, the jobless rate among people aged 18 to 24 remains high, with 1,435 people claiming JSA in March, compared with 1,500 the previous month.

South Tyneside’s youth jobless percentage figure is 11.1 per cent, compared with the regional average of 7.6 per cent.

Coun Michael Clare, lead member for regeneration and economy on South Tyneside Council, said: “The number of people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance is at its lowest since December 2008, which is very encouraging, and we are hopeful that this trend will continue.

“Youth unemployment is also continuing to fall, which is testament to the commitment we have shown to getting more young people into work, with measures such as the apprenticeship programme.

“We’re not complacent and we know there is still more to do, but these figures, along with an increase of 1,900 residents in work, are all positive, and we will continue to build on the progress we have made.”

Nationally, UK unemployment has fallen to a five-year low of 2.2 million.

The number of people out of work has fallen by 77,000 across the UK, with the national unemployment rate now standing at 6.9 per cent of the adult working population.

Meanwhile, average earnings have exceeded the Consumer Price Index measure of inflation for the first time since spring 2010.

Twitter: @terrykelly16




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