Job Watch Ludlow – unemployment up but still trending downwards in Ludlow

Unemployment in the Ludlow constituency is up by ten people, probably due to students who have completed their college and university courses signing on while they seek jobs. The real level of unemployment is higher than official statistics show – perhaps around 3%, 1,100 people. This is still a relatively good result but there is no room for complacency.

This July, there were just 563 Jobseekers claimants in the Ludlow constituency [1]. This is up ten claimants on the previous month. This is probably due to former students signing on as youth unemployment has risen by ten claimants to 135. The overall trend, therefore, is probably still downwards. Alternatively, unemployment could have flattened out. We’ll only know that in a couple of months.

 JSA Ludlow Constituency Aug 12 to Jul 14

Unemployment has fallen has fallen by well over a third in the last 12 months (39%). There are 170 people who have claimed Jobseekers for more than 12 months, down 31% in the last year.

The Ludlow constituency Jobseekers rate is 1.4% of the working population. The rate is 2.1% in Shrewsbury and Atcham; 2.4% in North Shropshire; 4.0% in the West Midlands; and 3.2% cross the UK.

Astute readers will notice the gap between this last statistic and newspaper headlines which say that unemployment nationally is now 6.4% – double the Jobseekers rate. That’s because the government is using the International Labour Organisation measure, which recognises that not all unemployed people sign on for Jobseekers. Unfortunately, the Labour Force Survey used to compile ILO statistics cannot be used below regional level. In the West Midlands, the latest data for April to June 2014 show an ILO unemployment rate of 7.7%. Again that’s close to double the Jobseekers rate.

I think it is fair to assume that unemployment in the Ludlow constituency is around double the Jobseekers rate. That gives us a true unemployment rate of approaching 3% in Ludlow with around 1,100 people unemployed. That’s still a good result, but as always it is no reason for complacency in trying to create more jobs.

Update 17 September 2014: Unemployment in the Ludlow constituency has fallen to 554 people.

[1] House of Commons Library briefing note.

[2] For a more detailed look at unemployment in Ludlow and how it is measured, see this earlier post.