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North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) Senior Economist Victoria Sutherland gave her reaction to today’s labour market statistics.

“We are pleased to see the continued improvement in the North East labour market over the last quarter. This builds on the progress we have seen over the last year.

“There are 25,000 more people aged 16 to 64 in employment than three months ago and 31,000 more than a year ago.

“The particularly strong improvement in employment over the last quarter has resulted in the employment rate for 16 to 64 year olds increasing from 72.0% to 73.6%. This is the largest increase of any of the UK regions and a record high for the region.

“There has been a substantial improvement in recent months in the unemployment rate which has decreased from 5.3% last quarter to 4.9% this quarter. The decrease over the year has been even greater – with unemployment this time last year being 5.9%.”

“The North East LEP will continue to work with its partners to deliver the Strategic Economic Plan’s ambition for more and better jobs for our region.”

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