Drop in jobless total

THE number of local people out of work and claiming benefits dropped by more than two per cent last month.

According to the government’s latest Labour Market Report, the borough’s jobless total stood at 2,284 during November - 1,637 men and 647 women. That represents a drop of 2.4 per cent (56 people) from the previous month, but a rise of 7.1 per cent over the past year.

The percentage of Newtownabbey’s working age population out of work and claiming benefits stands at 4.3 per cent. Across Northern Ireland, the number of people claiming unemployment related benefits stood at 64,700 in November - up 500 from the previous month.