From the TUC

Many areas are not benefiting from the improvements in the labour market

13 Jul 2011, by in Labour market

While there have been improvements in the labour market post recession, unemployment in some areas has got dramatically worse and are still in the midst of a jobs crisis.

Our analysis, ahead of the latest unemployment figures, looks at the proportion of Jobseeker’s Allowances (JSA) claimants to Job Centre Plus Vacancies in every local authority. This analysis ranks the 202 local authority areas by the increase in its claimant to vacancies ratio from May 2010 to May 2011.

local authority Ratio – May ’10 Ratio- May ’11 Ratio change May ’10 – May ’11 % Change May ’10 – May ’11
East Dunbartonshire – Scotland 6.3 16.2 +9.9 158%
Argyll & Bute – Scotland 4.6 11.5 +6.9 148%
Wandsworth – London 7.1 16.6 +9.5 134%
Torfaen – Wales 4.3 10.0 +5.7 132%
Walsall – West Midlands 4.9 10.8 +5.9 122%
Rhondda, Cynon, Taff – Wales 8.7 18.6 +9.9 114%
Tower Hamlets – London 7.7 16.4 +8.7 113%
Falkirk – Scotland 6.5 13.5 +7.1 110%
Kingston upon Hull – Yorkshire & Humber 9.2 18.6 +9.4 102%
Waltham Forest – London 10.6 21.2 +10.7 101%
Bracknell Forest – South East 3.2 6.5 +3.2 100%

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What we find is that many areas are not benefiting from the improvements in the labour market, as there are more unemployed people chasing each vacancy than the previous year. There has been a sharp rise in the claimant count/vacancy ratio (as seen above) where the ratio has doubled in 11 areas.  In total the claimant count/vacancy ratio has increased in 153 areas since the previous year.

Waltham Forest is one of the toughest places to find a job, with over twenty dole claimants chasing every vacancy.

The employment level is now 376,000 higher than it was 12 months ago. Private sector employment has risen 520,000 over the last 12 months. The Government’s response to unemployment so far has been to claim that there are plenty of jobs out there. However the reality is that in many areas of the country there are just no jobs for the unemployed, and these areas have not benefited from any private sector revival.

The employment situation will become even tougher in these localities as there are further cuts to come in public sector employment.