Devon’s JSA claimants increase slightly in February

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Posted on: 16 March 2016

The number of Job Seeker’s Allowance (JSA) claimants in Devon increased slightly in February.

The number of JSA claimants between January 2016 and February 2016 rose by 172– the total now standing at 3,924.

However, despite this small rise, the figure is still 13.6% lower than the same period last year, and 65% lower than in 2012.

Small rises are also to be expected at this time of year, given the seasonal nature of Devon’s employment.

The claimant rate (the proportion of the county’s working age population) remained largely unchanged across Devon’s districts – East Devon rising to 0.8% and Mid Devon to 0.9% in February.

Across the county this resulted in a rise of just 0.1% – the claimant rate for Devon now standing at 0.9%, well below the national average which stands at 1.6%.

Most districts experienced small increases in claimant numbers, the largest increase being in Mid Devon which rose by 104 claimants (60% of the total increase for Devon).

While Mid Devon’s increase represents a sizeable chunk of the overall rise in claimants for Devon in February, Mid Devon’s claimant rate is still very low, at 0.9% of the district’s working age population.

Torridge and West Devon experienced small decreases in claimants – Torridge falling by 5 claimants, and West Devon falling by 2 claimants.

The number of youth claimants (aged 24 and under) claiming JSA in Devon increased by just 5 claimants from January.

At a district level, 5 of Devon’s 8 districts experienced no change in youth claimants – with East Devon experiencing a fall of 10 claimants from January.

Councillor Andrew Leadbetter, Devon County Council’s Cabinet Member for Councillor Andrew LeadbetterEconomy and Growth, said:

“It is encouraging to see February’s figures well below those from the same period last year – total claimants for Torridge (an area of historically high JSA levels) are now at the 6th lowest level on record.

“However, we as a council recognise that more needs to be done, and we continue to work closely with local businesses and educational institutions to ensure the overall trend for reductions in JSA claimants continues.

“This includes continued collaboration on LEP wide schemes to boost high productivity employment and use European funds to help upskill our workforce; our Countywide Enterprise in Schools Grant, and schemes such as the Devon Delivers Business Promotion grant which helps Devon’s businesses to tap into growing markets.”

Posted in: Business and Economy