East: Unemployment Goes Up

The number of people unemployed in the East has gone up in the three months to April.

Nationally unemployment has fallen by 5,000 to 2.5 million and the numbers claiming jobseeker's allowance shrank by 8,600 last month to 1.5 million.

A record 29.7 million people are in work after a rise of 24,000 in recent months.

But, in the East of England the number of people out of work is up by 1,000 to 208,000 over the last three months to April.  That's 6.7% of the population here.

Responding to the national figures, Employment minister Mark Hoban said: "It's a credit to the growth of British businesses up and down the country that we now have a record number of people employed in the private sector.

"Our priority is getting people back into work and today's figures show we have more people in work than ever before, more women in work than ever before, and more hours worked in the economy than ever before.

"With the number of people in work increasing, and unemployment down, these are welcome figures. The fact that youth unemployment is also down is a positive sign."

TUC general secretary Frances O'Grady said: "Today's figures show that any economic green shoots are confined to the stock market and the pay of top bosses.

"While there is a record number of people in work - due to a rising population and people working past state pension age - the chances of actually being in work has fallen in the last three months.

"Decent pay rises seem confined to top bosses, whose pay is now rising 10 times as fast as ordinary workers. We need far stronger economic growth to boost our jobs market and for top bosses to stop hogging limited business gains for themselves.''

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