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Regional update: Record people in work as self-employed help to cut jobless rate

PUBLISHED: 09:53 14 May 2014 | UPDATED: 11:26 14 May 2014

Job Centre. Pic: PA

Job Centre. Pic: PA

The number of people in work has reached a record high after further falls in unemployment, fuelled by more self-employment.

Claimant Count

Below are the regional figures for the number of people on jobseeker’s allowance.

The data compares April 2014 with April last year.

• Breckland: 2013 - 2,269 rate 2.9 / 2014 - 1,616 rate 2.0

• Broadland: 2013 - 1,468 rate 2.0 / 2014 - 961 rate 1.3

• Fenland: 2013 - 2,120 rate 3.6 / 2014 - 1,347 rate 2.3

• Great Yarmouth: 2013 - 3,648 rate 3.2 / 2014 - 2,651 rate 4.5

• King`s Lynn and West Norfolk: 2013 - 2,907 rate 3.3 / 2014 - 2,133 rate 2.4

• North Norfolk: 2013 - 1,500 rate 2.6 / 2014 - 1,017 rate 1.8

• Norwich: 2013 - 4,487 rate 4.9 / 2014 - 3,143 rate 3.4

• South Norfolk: 2013 - 1,538 rate 2.1 / 2014 - 1,030 rate 1.4

• Waveney: 2013 - 2,826 rate 4.3 / 2014 - 2,008 rate 3.0

– Total: 2013 - 22,799 rate 3.5 / 2014 - 15,906 rate 2.4

More than 30.4 million people are now in work - the highest since records began in 1971 - while self-employment has also reached a record high of 4.5 million.

Across the East of England unemployment fell by 9,000 bringing the total number of people out of work across the region to 171,000, with an unemployment rate of 5.4pc.

The number of people working for themselves jumped by 183,000 in the quarter to March, compared with a rise of 375,000 over the past year.

Unemployment has fallen by 133,000 to 2.2 million, the lowest for five years, giving a jobless rate of 6.8pc.

Other data from the Office for National Statistics (ONS) showed that jobseeker’s allowance claimants fell by 25,100 in April to 1.12 million, the 18th consecutive monthly reduction.

Meanwhile, average earnings increased by 1.7pc in the year to March, slightly ahead of the latest CPI inflation rate of 1.6pc - the first time this has happened for four years.

The number of economically-inactive people fell by 85,000 in the latest quarter to 8.85 million, while long-term and youth unemployment also fell.

The number of people out of work for over a year was down by 32,000 to 813,000, with unemployment among 16 to 24-year-olds falling by 48,000 to 868,000, the lowest figure for five years.

Unemployment has fallen by more than 300,000 over the past year, giving jobless rates of 7% for men and 6.4% for women.

The number of people in a job rose 283,000 in the last three months - the largest quarterly increase in 43 years. The number of unemployed young people has been falling for the last eight months.

Minister for Employment Esther McVey said: “As the recovery takes hold, more people are able to get a job or set up their own business and become the employers of tomorrow.

“Each and every person who has made a new start or hired someone new is helping to make Britain a more prosperous and confident place to be.

“We will continue to support those in and out of work who want to get on and fulfil their ambitions for a more secure future.”

Prime Minister David Cameron tweeted: “There’s more to do, but it’s welcome unemployment is down again. More jobs means more financial security for people.”

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