Briefings and Blog

Need help? How to use this site >

We are all in this together

We are all in this together – or are we?  The traditional economist view is, of course, yes: we are all part of one big economy, we all have a role to play and the actions of one economic agent will impact on another.  I recall my very first...

All Aboard..

With this months figures showing the employment train is leaving ‘Recession Station’ the immediate question has to be where is it going?  Nationally the rate of unemployment has fallen and the number in employment has risen.  For Devon the number of...

Chief Economist’s Blog – How strong is Devon’s economy?

This really depends on how you define strong.  There are a number of indicators where Devon performs well and a number of others where the county performs less well. Unemployment for example is and has been for some time, lower than the national...

Welcome to the new Devon County Council Economy Blog

This blog will be keeping you regularly updated with key information that has an effect on the Devon economy. Rob Hetherington, Devon County Council’s Chief Economist will be sharing his views on the economy.


March 2010 - Hold Tight!

Unemployment in Devon is holding tight at 2.5% with no significant change in the number of people claiming Job Seekers Allowance this month. The number did edge up slightly to 10,766 (an increase of just 62 people) but things could have been much worse. Activity in the labour market picked up slightly with significant churn returning to the labour market - over 2,500 people stopped claiming JSA only slightly less then the number of new claimants (overall churn increase by around a quarter – a significant step in activity).

February 2010 - Quite Contrary

Unfortunately the Devon economy has stopped being contrary. After months of resisting the national trends January saw an unwelcome leap in Job Seekers Allowance Claimants with an increase in unemployment from 9,734 in December to 10,704– a jump of almost 10%. This is the first time since September 2009 that figures have exceeded 10,000 and the largest monthly increase since February 2009 and the highest number of Claimants since May 2009.

January 2010 - On the Up!

Despite the rapid onset of unemployment increases, the Devon economy has stabilised relatively quickly over the past nine months and remained roughly constant at around 10,000 JSA claimants through the summer of 2009 and into the winter. The unemployment rate during this period has been nearly half that of the national average.