North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Senior Economist Victoria Sutherland gave her reaction to today’s regional labour market statistics.
Whilst it is disappointing that we have seen a small rise in the number of people in the North East that are unemployed over the last quarter, looking at the some of the other indicators released today provides a more positive picture of regional labour market performance
The unemployment rate for 16-64 year olds in the region remains unchanged on the quarter and unemployment is down considerably over the past 12 months, with 20,000 fewer unemployed.
In addition, economic inactivity has continued to decline. We have seen a reduction in the number of people aged 16-64 that are economically inactive in the last quarter of 16,000, with 15,000 going into work.
Looking at all aged 16 and over, there are 4,000 more people in work in the North East compared to the previous quarter and 16,000 more compared to last year.
This shows that the North East economy has the capacity to create new jobs, helping more individuals to move into work.
Today’s figures also confirm that the North East is continuing to close the employment rate gap with the English average.
We recognise that recent surveys have seen some negative sentiment from businesses about future prospects and we will continue to work with partners to do all we can at the North East LEP to support business to grow and thrive.