Unemployment rises as festive jobs dry up
Dole queues gained another 1,110 people across Kent last month as temporary work came to an end after the Christmas period.
There were 17,880 claimants on universal credit or jobseeker’s allowance in January according to the Office for National Statistics. The increase is the largest in three year.
However, unemployment across the South East fell by 1,000 to 179,000 from October to December – 33,000 less than a year ago. The region’s unemployment rate remained flat at 3.9%.
For the first time since January last year, every district in Kent recorded an increase in those receiving handouts. Ashford’s figure went up 70 to 1,055, and in Shepway the figure rose by 85 to 1,370. The smallest increase was in Sevenoaks, up 30 to 545.
Nationally, there were 1.69 million unemployed people from October to December, 60,000 fewer than for July to September 2015 and 172,000 fewer than for a year earlier. The unemployment rate for October to December 2015 was 5.1%.