The number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance (JSA) has risen from 9,516 in October to 9,829 in November, this is an increase of 313 claimants and represents a 3.3% increase from the previous month. The latest figures buck the UK trend, which has seen a slight decrease (0.2%) in the number of people claiming JSA between October and November. However, in terms of the percentage of the working age population (16-64) who are in receipt of this out of work benefit, the rate remains unchanged in both Devon and the UK. The rate of JSA claimants continues to stand at 2.1% in Devon and encouragingly remains below the UK average and that of our neighbouring areas, a trend which has continued post recession.
In the run up to the Chancellor’s Autumn Statement, there was fierce speculation about whether
the Government would waiver from its stated budget deficit reduction plan. Sluggish economic
growth, high unemployment and suggestions that the Government would fall short of meeting its
target to reduce the budget deficit all pointed to a need for a much more interventionist growth
strategy. But if the Government is to stick to Plan A in terms of deficit reduction, how will it do this?
In the days running up to the publication of the statement and the OBR report, numerous
Government announcements trailed what might appear. Many of them were confirmed today, and
the focus remains firmly on deficit reduction, but with a redistribution of funds at the margins.
For the first time since July the number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance in Devon has fallen from 9,556 in September to 9,516 in October, this represents a 0.4% decrease month on month and follows the national trend (UK) where there has been a 1% decrease. As the decrease is only slight, this has had no impact on the rate of people aged 16-64 claiming JSA and this remains the same at 2.1%. Encouragingly the rate of unemployment in Devon remains below the UK average of 3.9% as well as our neighbouring authorities, a trend which has