Universal Credit and the claimant count

This briefing paper explains how Universal Credit has increased the number of people claiming unemployment benefits, by requiring a broader group of claimants to look for work than was the case under Jobseeker’s Allowance. In January 2019, the Department for Work and Pensions published an ‘alternative’ claimant count for the first time. This models what the claimant count would have been if Universal Credit had been fully in place since 2013. Read more

COVID-19 outbreak: What data or information do experts want the UK Government to release?

Over 1,100 experts have shared with us their concerns about COVID-19 and COVID-impacted areas in the immediate and longer term future. This report includes data or information experts would like to see the Government release in order to understand the decisions that underpin its approach to the COVID-19 outbreak. Generally, experts have highlighted five key areas of concern in the way the UK Government has released information. These include: transparency of decision making mechanisms, the quality, quantity and range of types of evidence used, the justification of the Government's decisions, the need for accessible and understandable information, and the need to publish data as soon as its available. Experts have also called for additional information to be released by the Government including: academic studies, models and Government data sets used to make decisions, all data being collected during the COVID-19 outbreak, Government guidance to departments, public bodies and public services, and Government and other public recovery strategies. Read more

People claiming unemployment benefits by constituency, June 2019

This paper provides figures for the number of people claiming unemployment benefits (the “claimant count”) by parliamentary constituency, as well as a summary of the latest labour market statistics for the UK as a whole. In the latest quarter, there was a fall in unemployment levels and the unemployment rate remains at its joint lowest level since comparable records began in 1971. Despite employment levels increasing, the employment rate fell slightly from the previous quarter. Average pay continued to grow faster than inflation, with pay excluding bonuses growing at its fastest rate since 2008. Read more

People claiming unemployment benefits by constituency, April 2019

This paper provides figures for the number of people claiming unemployment benefits (the “claimant count”) by parliamentary constituency, as well as a summary of the latest labour market statistics for the UK as a whole. The unemployment rate fell to its lowest rate since 1975 in the latest quarter, following another large fall in unemployment. There was also a large increase in employment, which was almost entirely driven by an increase for those who are self-employed. The employment rate remained at its joint-highest level since comparable records began in 1971. Average pay continued to grow faster than inflation. Read more

Universal Credit roll-out: Autumn/Winter 2017

Universal Credit aims to replace six working-age benefits. The Government is now rolling out the Full Service, under which everyone eligible can claim UC no matter their circumstances. Once the Full Service is launched in an area both the number and range of people claiming UC is likely to grow quickly. At the end of September 2017 there were 101 jobcentres running the Full Service. Between October 2017 and January 2018, 134 more jobcentres will launch the Full Service. That will add 150,000 more people to the UC caseload – a 25% increase, and an overall rise from 8% to 10% of the final 7 million people expected to be eligible. Read more