Devon job seekers allowance numbers in decline

PUBLISHED: 16:52 15 August 2013 | UPDATED: 16:52 15 August 2013

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Encouraging signs for Devon’s economy.

The number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) in Devon has fallen for the fifth consecutive month with claimant numbers the lowest since November 2008.

The claimant count across the county was down by 244 from 7,741 in June to 7,497 in July.

Even though the Devon figures reflect the national trend, the month on month decrease of 3.2 per cent has occurred at a faster rate in Devon compared to the UK (1.5 per cent).

The claimant count in Devon stands at 1.6 per cent of the working age population, which remains below the national figure of 3.5 per cent.

Year on year the number of people claiming JSA in Devon has fallen by 1,774 claimants or 19.1 per cent, which is reducing at a faster rate than the national average of 9.8 per cent.

Youth unemployment in Devon has gone down very slightly by just 5 claimants, from 2,065 in June to 2,060 in July.

The number of people aged 24 and under claiming JSA in Devon accounts for 27.5 per cent of total claimants in the county which is slightly higher than nationally (26.6 per cent).

However, youth unemployment in Devon is 25.4 per cent lower (or 700 claimants) than a year ago.

Over the past year, youth unemployment has fallen at a faster rate in Devon than the UK average (25.4 per cent compared to 17 per cent).

Devon County Cabinet member with responsibility for Economy and Employment Andrew Leadbetter, said; “It’s good news that the number of claimants in Devon has fallen again to the lowest July figure in four years. We hope that this trend will continue in the coming months.

“The rate of JSA claimants at over half the national average shows the relative strength of Devon’s labour market.

“Levels of youth unemployment have remained stable month on month which is encouraging given that full-time education placements are coming to an end.

However, a proportion of the total claimant count youth unemployment has risen between June and July from 26.8 per cent to 27.5 per cent, so it is important that we continue to monitor this to ensure we are providing the necessary support for young people across the county.”


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