Corby sees highest rise for unemployment benefit claims in Northants

The local authority also has the highest rate of benefit claims in the county

Tuesday, 19th May 2020, 1:45 pm

Corby has the highest rate of unemployment benefit claimants and has seen the sharpest increase of claimants in Northamptonshire this year, according to data released today (Tuesday) from the Office of National Statistics.

Across the county there were 20,375 people claiming unemployment benefits but Corby had the highest rate, with 6.5 per cent of the population claiming.

This is an increase of three per cent in one year, the highest increase in Northamptonshire.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Corby has the highest rate of unemployment claimants, according to the ONS

It is also above the national rate and the county rate. In the UK, 5.1 per cent of the population are claiming unemployment benefits while across Northamptonshire, 4.4 per cent of people are claiming.

There was a big increase in claims at the end of this period as the economic effect of lockdown began to be felt.

Today (Tuesday), the Department of Work and Pensions said: “There were 1.5 million claims made to Universal Credit in the period 13 March 2020 to 9 April 2020.

“This is over six times more than in the same period last year and the most in a single month since the introduction of Universal Credit in April 2013.”

Kettering and Wellingborough are in line with the UK rate, with 5 per cent of residents claiming benefits in both boroughs.

East Northants is below the national rate, with 4 per cent of residents making claims.

The ONS said this data shows how many people were claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance on April 9, 2020 in local authorities and gives an indication of how much unemployment is rising.

Jobseeker’s Allowance has been replaced by Universal Credit, which has been rolled out in Northamptonshire and was available in all of Great Britain by December 2018.

More people are required to look for work under the new system, so that could be another factor for the rise in claimant count.

Not everyone who is unemployed is eligible for the benefit, so it is not a direct measure of those out of work.

Altogether, north Northants has a combined claiming rate higher than the south of the county. Corby, Wellingborough and Kettering take the top three spots, with East Northants in fifth behind Northampton.

In terms of the increase in claiming, all four boroughs in the north had a greater rise in claimants this year than Northampton, Daventry and South Northamptonshire.