Unemployment total falls

TOTAL unemployment in the UK has fallen for the first time in nearly two years, official figures revealed yesterday. But the pre-Christmas dip in the dole queue still left the jobless count in Suffolk well above the levels of a year ago.

SUFFOLK: Total unemployment in the UK has fallen for the first time in nearly two years, official figures have revealed.

But the pre-Christmas dip in the dole queue still left the jobless count in Suffolk well above the levels of a year ago.

Today's figures from the Office for National Statistics showed that the total number of people out of work in the UK fell by 7,000 in the three months to November to 2.46million.

The narrower count of people in receipt of the Jobseeker's Allowance fell for the second month in a row in December, down by 15,200 to 1.61million - the biggest monthly fall since April 2007.


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However, unemployment remains more than 500,000 higher than a year ago, with the number of long-term jobless - those out of work for more than a year - now standing at 631,000, the highest figure since 1997.

Benefit claimant counts in most parts of Suffolk, including Ipswich, followed the national downward trend last month.

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The biggest falls were in east Suffolk, with Suffolk Coastal, where the count fell by 31 to 1,448, and Waveney, down 67 to 2,631.

Small falls left the rate unchanged in Ipswich, down 11 to 3,792 (5.0per cent), Mid Suffolk, down 22 to 1,156 (2.1pc) and Babergh, down 26 to 1,284 (2.6pc).

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