Unemployment Briefing - November 2019.

This article has been kindly given to the SSCA by Philip Atkins OBE, Leader of Staffordshire County Council via e-mail (philip.atkins@staffordshire.gov.uk).

The latest position for November 2019 Staffordshire shows a monthly increase of 175, with 10,930 claimants reported for November and the claimant count rate remains unchanged at 2%. However, Staffordshire continues to record the joint second lowest claimant rate compared with the 14 West Midlands Strategic Authorities, and is lower than the West Midlands (3.8%) and national (2.9%) rates. An increase has however been experienced both nationally and regionally, in terms of the numbers and claimant rate.

The claimant count numbers have increased across all districts, with Stafford and South Staffordshire experiencing the highest monthly increase, although rates remain largely unchanged and still in line with the county position, and well below the national and regional position  Following recent analysis, the reason for any continued increases is the roll out of Universal Credit, as validated by the Department for Work and Pensions.

By getting Brexit done, this People’s One Nation Conservative Government will start repaying the trust placed in us and delivering on people’s priorities - ensuring more people have a well-paid job and helping with the cost of living - including by increasing the National Living Wage to £10.50 per hour by 2024 and keeping taxes low.

The public voted for a Government that would get Brexit done and move this country forward - and that’s exactly what we intend to do, starting this week.

New figures also show that unemployment is at its lowest level since 1975. The employment rate and the number of people in full-time work are at record highs - and wages have risen ahead of prices for 21 months in a row.

Key National Statistics:

  • Wages: Average weekly earnings for employees increased by 3.5 per cent compared with a year earlier - growing by 1.8 per cent after adjusting for inflation – meaning people have more money in their pockets.
  • Employment: 32.80 million (up 309,000 over the last year and up by 3.75 million since 2010).
  • Full-time employment: A record high of 24.24 million (up 272,000 over the last year and 3.02 million since 2010).
  • Employment rate: 76.2 per cent (up 0.4 points over the past year and up 5.9 points since 2010).
  • Unemployment: 1.28 million (down 93,000 over the past year and down by 1.23 million since 2010).
  • Unemployment rate: 3.8 per cent (down 0.3 points over the past year and down 4.2 points since 2010) - more than halving since 2010 (8.0 per cent).
  • Youth unemployment: There are 466,000 fewer young people out of work since 2010 - halving since 2010.

Conservatives have also increased the personal allowance to £12,500 a year early so that people can keep more of what they earn. We have cut income tax for 32 million people and taken 1.74 million people out of paying tax altogether. An average rate taxpayer is paying £1,205 less tax this year than in 2010-11. We are helping families with the cost of living so they have more money in their pockets.

These figures show our balanced approach to the economy is working. We are backing businesses across the country to create more, higher-paying jobs through our modern Industrial Strategy and our developing Local Industrial Strategy.

Why does this matter? Because behind every employment number is a person whose self-esteem, mental well-being, economic circumstances and life chances are all vastly improved by being in the workplace. With so many employed and such a small number of people claiming benefits across Staffordshire, this is good news for everyone in the county and means people are making the most of the opportunities on offer.

Our long term economic plan in action shows we are backing businesses to create more, higher-paying jobs and as Staffordshire Conservatives we will continue to help people build a better future for themselves and their families.

Regards,

Philip Atkins OBE

Leader of Staffordshire County Council

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Claimant Count - November 2019.pdf 274.37 KB