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Unemployment: Young People

Volume 502: debated on Monday 14 December 2009

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office how many and what proportion of people aged 16 to 24 years old (a) were unemployed and (b) claimed benefit in each (i) region, (ii) local authority area and (iii) parliamentary constituency (A) in May 1997 and (B) at the latest date for which information is available. (306367)

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

Letter from Jil Matheson, dated December 2009:

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. Unfortunately the sample size does not support analyses of unemployment of 16-24 year olds for local authorities or parliamentary constituencies.

Table 1 shows the number and percentage of 16-24 year olds who were unemployed in each English Government Office Region, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland in the 12 month period ending February 1998 from the Annual LFS and March 2009 from the APS. As with any sample survey, estimates from the APS are subject to a margin of uncertainty. A guide to the quality of the estimates is given in table 1.

ONS compiles the number of claimants of Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) from the Jobcentre Plus administrative system. Table 2 shows the number of computerised claims of Jobseeker's allowance (JSA) for people, aged 16-24 resident in each of the requested geographies in May 1997 and October 2009.

It is not possible to provide the percentage of 16-24 year olds who were claiming JSA. As an alternative, table 3 shows the proportion of 18-24 year olds resident in each of the requested geographies who were claiming JSA in May 1997 and October 2009. This data is not available for parliamentary constituencies in Scotland and Northern Ireland.

As the information provided in these tables is extensive, a copy of the tables has been placed in the House of Commons Library.

National and local area estimates for many labour market statistics, including employment, unemployment and claimant count are available on the NOMIS website at:

http://www.nomisweb.co.uk