Festive boost for jobs market

Ross Smith
Ross Smith
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THE Christmas jobs market helped see the number of people looking for work on Wearside drop last month.

There were 10,180 people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance – and so classed as actively looking for employment – across the city in November, a fall of 155 on October’s figure of 10,335.

Across the North East, the claimant count stood at 95,400 or 7.8 per cent, compared with 4.8 per cent nationally.

North East Chamber of Commerce Director of Policy Ross Smith said: “December estimates demonstrate a slight improvement on those released last month, but the good news is that both employment and unemployment rates continue to head in the right direction over the quarter.

“All positive change is going to be gradual, but it is reassuring that the longer-term view remains positive. NECC’s last Quarterly Economic Survey showed increasing private sector positivity on workforce numbers and plant investment.

“However, growth in some areas – particularly engineering – remains constrained by skills shortages which must be addressed to help make a significant dent in these figures.”

Nationally, the number of people claiming Jobseekers’ Allowance fell by 3,000 in the last month and there were are 44,000 more people in full-time work over the quarter.

Minister for Employment Mark Hoban, said: “Once again these figures show the private sector is creating far more jobs than are being lost in the public sector.

“It’s a credit to British businesses that they’re proving wrong those cynics who claimed the private sector wouldn’t be able to step up.

“With unemployment falling again and more people in work, today’s figures are very welcome.

“To see youth unemployment at its lowest level for three-and-a-half years is particularly good news.

“But we’re not complacent and know there are still lots of challenges ahead, which is why the Government will continue working hard to help those people who want to get on in life and allow the UK to compete in the global race.”

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