Unemployment is on the up in town as Rugby falls in line with national trend

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UNEMPLOYMENT is on the rise again after months of Rugby bucking the national trend and falling.

The number of Jobseekers Allowance (JSA) claimants rose by 220 people last month – 1.7 per cent - after rising by just 23 in December. The news means Rugby’s rate stands at 2.7 per cent, still 16.7 per cent lower than last year’s and well below the West Midlands’ average. Nationally the figure has risen to 4 per cent from 3.9. The West Midlands’ figure has also risen from 4.9 per cent to 5 per cent.

One of the reasons behind Rugby’s encouraging figures over the past few months could be the logistics industry, which in Rugby opens up thousands of temporary vacancies for warehouse workers in preparation for Christmas.

Scott Saunders, of Rugby Recruitment, said that although demand for logistics workers was lower than before Christmas, there is a big demand for engineering workers.

He said: “There is demand for workers in logistics until the middle of January, and since then we have noticed a lot of people coming in looking for work because their contracts have just ran out.”

He added: “On the other hand, engineering is very busy.

“There is a big demand for what are known as millers and turners. The engineering industry seems to be holding the country together right now and firms like Jaguar are providing a lot of contracts.

“In this sector there’s a big skills shortage.”

The number of claimants aged 18 to 24 has fallen in Warwickshire over the last month. In December 2011 there were 2,340 claimants aged 18 to 24 years, 5.4 per cent, whereas in the previous month there were 2,455 claimants, 5.7 per cent. According to the Office for National Statistics, the UK unemployment rate, different from JSA rate, is at a 16-year high at 8.4 per cent.