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Unemployment in Kent dips by more than 1,000

Job Centre Plus, Margate
Job Centre Plus, Margate

by business editor Trevor Sturgess

Unemployment has dipped by more than a thousand across the county.

Figures released today by the Office for National Statistics show that 37,602 people were out of work and claiming Jobseeker's Allowance last month, a drop of 1,027.

The Medway total fell by 131 to 7,410 (4.4% of the workforce). In the rest of the county, the dole queue shortened by 896 to 30,192 (3.4%).

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Nationally, the number of people out of work fell 45,000 to 2.63m in the three months to March (8.2%). The claimant count fell by 13,700 to 1.59m.

All 12 Kent districts saw unemployment fall. Swale was the star performer with a steep dip of 198 people.

Gravesham (down 95), Shepway (down 97), Tunbridge Wells (down 89) and Maidstone (down 86) all showed encouraging falls.

Kent unemployment figures for April 2012
Kent unemployment figures for April 2012

Claimant count on April 12: Kent and Medway combined, 37,602 (down 1,027); Medway, 7,410 (down 131); Rest of Kent, 30,192 (down 896); Ashford, 2,059 (down 63); Canterbury, 2,524 (down 59); Dartford, 2,006 (down 30); Dover, 2,783 (down 19); Gravesham, 2,864 (down 95); Maidstone, 2,549 (down 86); Sevenoaks, 1,328 (down 78); Shepway, 2,777 (down 97); Swale, 3,600 (down 198); Thanet, 4,902 (down 44); Tonbridge and Malling, 1,649 (down 38); Tunbridge Wells, 1,151 (down 89).

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