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Unemployment: Essex

Volume 490: debated on Monday 30 March 2009

To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster what the average rate of unemployment was in (a) Castle Point and (b) Essex in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. (267055)

The information requested falls within the responsibility of the UK Statistics Authority. I have asked the Authority to reply.

Letter from Karen Dunnell, dated March 2009:

As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your Parliamentary Question asking what the average rate of unemployment was in (a) Castle Point and (b) Essex in each of the last five years. (267055)

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) compiles unemployment statistics for local areas from the Annual Population Survey (APS) and its predecessor the annual Labour Force Survey (LFS), following International Labour Organisation (ILO) definitions.

Reliable estimates for the Castle Point parliamentary constituency are not available due to small sample sizes.

Estimates have been provided for Essex for the 12 month period ending February 2004 from the annual LFS, and for the 12 month periods ending in March for 2005 to 2008 from the APS. An estimate has also been provided for the 12 month period ending June 2008, which is the latest period for which figures for local areas are available. The level of unemployment has also been provided for the latest period, in order to attach an indication of the quality of the estimates.

As these estimates are for a subset of the population in small geographical areas, they are based on small sample sizes, and are therefore subject to large margins of uncertainty.

Table 1: Percentage1 of unemployed persons resident in Castle Point and Essex

12 months ending:

Percentage Essex

Thousand Essex

February 2004

3.5

March 2005

3 9

March 2006

3 7

March 2007

3.4

March 2008

4.5

June 20082

4.6

***33

‘—’ = unavailable or not reliable

1 Unemployed as a percentage of the economically active population

2 Coefficients of Variation have been calculated for the latest period as an indication of the quality of the estimates. See Guide to Quality.

Guide to Quality:

The Coefficient of Variation (CV) indicates the quality of an estimate, the smaller the CV value the higher the quality. The true value is likely to lie within +/- twice the CV—for example, for an estimate of 200 with a CV of 5 per cent. we would expect the population total to be within the range 180-220.

Key Coefficient of Variation (CV) (%) Statistical Robustness

* 0 [le] CV< 5 Estimates are considered precise

** 5 [le] CV < 10 Estimates are considered reasonably precise

*** 10 [le] CV < 20 Estimates are considered acceptable

**** CV ≥20 Estimates are considered too unreliable for practical purposes

Source:

Annual Population Survey/Annual Labour Force Survey