Unemployment in East Anglia falls by 2,000

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Unemployment in East Anglia has decreased by 2,000, official figures have revealed.

According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS), a total of 169,000 people were unemployed in the region between March and May.

The region's unemployment rate was 5.4% and saw a drop of 1.2% during the quarter.

Nationwide, the new cabinet was given good news with the latest figures showing record employment and another huge fall in the numbers out of work.

More than 30 million people are in work, an increase of almost one million over the past year and the best figures since records began in 1971.

Unemployment fell by 121,000 in the quarter to May - the lowest since the end of 2009.

The number of people claiming jobseeker's allowance fell by 36,300 in June to 1.04 million, the 20th consecutive monthly fall and the lowest total since 2008.

Economic inactivity, covering those looking after a relative, on long-term sick leave, or no longer looking for work, was 67,000 lower at just under 8.8 million, the lowest figure for more than a decade.

Just over 78% of men and 68% of women are in work, giving an employment rate of 73.1%.

Long-term and youth unemployment have both continued to fall. The number of jobless 16-to-24-year-olds fell by 64,000 over the latest quarter to 817,000, including 283,000 full-time students looking for part-time work.

There was also a drop in the number of people in a part-time job wanting full-time work - down by 61,000 to 1.3 million.

Employment Minister Esther McVey said: "An important milestone has been reached in our country's recovery. With one of the highest employment rates ever, it's clear that the government's long-term economic plan to help businesses create jobs and get people working again is the right one.

"We know there is more to do, and the best way to do so is to go on delivering a plan that's creating growth and jobs."

Paul Kenny, general secretary of the GMB union, said: "The fall in unemployment is welcome. However, it is time to drill down into the details of what types of jobs are being created and where.

"This is because large swathes of the country and a great number of workers have seen little or no benefit from this recovery.

"Much of the growth is due to demographic factors, and the increase in population means GDP per head is still well below 2007 levels. This is the root cause of average earnings being down 13.8% in real terms since then."