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Jobless figure fall welcomed

13:00 24 June 2014

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The number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) in East Devon fell during April and May.

New figures show the claimant rate in the region fell by 8.3 per cent over the last two months to 0.9 per cent of the working population.

Devon-wide, the claimant rate stands at 1.2 per cent, compared to a national picture of 2.7 per cent.

In Sid Valley postcodes during May, there were a total of 70 people claiming JSA. Of this total, 10 are classed as long-term unemployed having claimed for 12 months or more.

During the same month in Ottery St Mary postcodes, 38 people claimed JSA, with five classed as long-term claimants.

East Devon MP Hugo Swire welcomed the latest figures, adding they were proof that the government’s economic plan was working.

He said: “We need to keep working through the plan, which is delivering growth and jobs, so that more people in East Devon who want to work hard and get on can have the security of a regular pay packet they can bring home to their families.”

Devon County Council’s economy chief Councillor Andrew Leadbetter added that although the unemployment rate is relatively low in Devon, business productivity and wages were below behind the national average in many parts of the county.

He said: “Therefore a key priority for the council is to help our businesses expand and grow, as well as bringing high value jobs to our county by securing inward investment.”

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