The number of people looking for work in Hartlepool fell again last month.
There were 2,050 people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance – paid only to those classed as actively looking for employment – in the constituency last month, down from 2,147 in April.
Year-on-year, the claimant count fell by 1,200, down from 3,250.
The picture was repeated across the region.
In Easington, the claimant count was down by 24 between April and May, from 1,578 to 1,554 and dropped by 609 over the year.
Stockton North, which includes Billingham, Wolviston and parts of Wynyard, saw 2,162 people claiming Jobseeker’s Allowance, a drop of 47 on April’s figure of 2,209 and down 884 year-on-year.
And the claimant count in Sedgefield fell by three from April to May, to 1,160, and was down 496 over the year.
Jonathan Walker, head of policy and campaigns at the North East Chamber of Commerce, said: “When comparing the figures with those over the last 12 months, the North East is still making remarkable progress in reducing unemployment and increasing the number of people in work.
“Although these numbers represent a slight softening in the improvements in the labour market we’ve seen recently, it is positive that the North East continues to reduce unemployment at a faster rate than the UK average.
“These numbers come at a time when we’re increasingly hearing that businesses are facing skills shortages and are struggling to hire the right people but the figures suggest there are still talented people available in the North East’s labour market.
“Nevertheless, we shouldn’t get complacent.
“These improvements can only be sustained for so long before we face a real skills crisis in some sectors. We must continue to build a dialogue between education institutions and organisations who have the potential to welcome future apprentices and learners into their work place to experience first-hand the world of work.”