Rise in South Tyneside jobless claimant count in the last month

The latest jobs figures have been released
The latest jobs figures have been released

The number of people classed as looking for work in South Tyneside rose last month.

There were 4,590 people claiming out-of-work benefits - Jobseeker’s Allowance or Universal Credit - in the borough last month, a rise of 210 on August and 535 year-on-year.

Employment is up on the previous quarter, however the growth in employment in the region has not kept pace with the national trend.

Paul Carbert

The Department of Work and Pensions’ Steve McCall said there are opportunities for jobseekers including in the hospitality sector.

“There are still a fair number of job opportunities out there,” he said.

“There is a mixture of Christmas jobs and some permanent positions,” he said.

“We are working with a couple of hotels and there are still over 80 jobs available with Go North East. We are working very hard to find them bus drivers.”

Across the North East, the figures for August show employment stands at 1,211,000 or 71.3% - an increase of 10,000 over the quarter, but a fall of 6,000 over the year. This compares to a rate of 75.5% nationally.

But the number of people classed as unemployed in the region also fell over the last year.

Unemployment currently stands at 57,000 or 4.5% (compared to four per cent nationally), a fall of 4,000 over the quarter and 18,000 over the year.

Paul Carbert, policy adviser with the North East England Chamber of Commerce, said: “The labour market statistics released this morning show more positive news on North East unemployment as the number of people out of work has halved in the past four years.

“Employment is up on the previous quarter, however the growth in employment in the region has not kept pace with the national trend. The number of people classed as economically inactive has also increased, and the economic inactivity rate is higher in the North East than any other English region.

“This is a cause of concern for our potential for growth.

“The results of our Quarterly Economic Survey show a drop in business confidence about current and future workforce levels. We urge the Government to use the upcoming budget to reduce costs for businesses looking to take on more staff.

“Our members have also called on the Chancellor to provide more flexibility to firms recruiting apprentices to open up entry-level opportunities for young people and address skills gaps.”