Fylde coast unemployment rises once more

Unemployment has risen
Unemployment has risen

Unemployment nationally has increased by the greatest amount in almost five years, while earnings continue to grow more slowly than prices, new figures reveal.

There were 1.47 million people out of work in the quarter to December 2017, an increase of 46,000, giving a jobless rate of 4.4 per cent.

The quarterly rise was the biggest since early 2013, although unemployment is 123,000 lower than a year ago, and job vacancies at a record 823,000, according to the Office for National Statistics.

Locally the monthly figures show a slight increase in most areas in the number of people claiming working age benefits such as Universal Credit.

In the Blackpool North Constituency 1,755 people claimed benefit in January, up 0.4 per cent on the same month last year.

In Blackpool South there were 2,470 claimants up 0.3 per cent. Fylde had 710 claimants the same as last year. Wyre and Preston North had 415 claimants, also the same as in 2017 while Lancaster and Fleetwood had 1,220 up 0.3 per cent.

The ONS figures for the North West as a whole showed 145,000 out of work, a 4.1 per cent unemployment rate and up from 4 per cent last time.

Blackpool North Conservative MP Paul Maynard said: “The Government continues to work hard to create jobs and opportunities and drive down unemployment and nationally there are a record number of job vacancies.

"The challenges in areas like Blackpool are clear and it is important the council does all it can to support business and help bring quality jobs to the town.

“There are hundreds more people in work in Blackpool now than there were in 2010 but we must will continue to look at ways in which people can be supported in finding work.”