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Chamber's response to today's Employment Statistics


Paul Carbert, policy adviser, North East England Chamber of Commerce said: “We’re delighted that today’s statistics today continue the recent trend of positive news for the North East labour market.

Between February and April 2018, the unemployment rate in the North East fell below 5% for the first time. The number of people out of work in our region is down by 11,000 over the same period last year, and is now at half the level of four years ago.

“Despite this, we are concerned that the number of apprenticeship starts and the number of workplaces employing apprentices has fallen in the North East since the introduction of the apprenticeship reforms in April 2017. We have called on the Government to reform the apprenticeship system and allow businesses greater flexibility to access funding for relevant workplace training.”


  • Employment in the North East stands at 1,229,000 or 73.2% - an increase of 13,000 over the quarter and 6,000 over the year. This compares to a rate of 75.6% nationally.
  • North East unemployment stands at 59,000 or 4.6% - a fall of 8,000 over the quarter and 11,000 over the year. This compares to a rate of 4.2% nationally.
  • The claimant count stands at 59,500 or 4.9% in the North East. The national claimant count rate is 2.5%.

This data covers the period February 2018 to April 2018. The next release is on 17 July 2018.