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State of the Region 2020 Full Report

1. No Poverty

End poverty in all its forms everywhere

The WMCA average household income after housing costs was £24,950 in 2018, with the national average standing at £28,296. This has increased by 8.2% (+£1,886) since 2016 which is above the national increase of 3.4%.

In 2019, the WMCA unemployment rate was 5.5% (109,500 people) which is above the UK average of 4.0%. When compared to 2018, this has increased by 0.1 percentage points (pp) or 4,200 people which is contrast to the UK drop of 0.3pp. To reach the UK average would require 30,320 less people to be classed as unemployed in the WMCA. 

There were 602,900 residents aged 16-64 that were classed as economically inactive in 2019, 106,700 (17.7%) of these residents stated they wanted a job which has increased by 1.0pp since 2018. 

The average annual full-time earnings for WMCA residents was £29,422 in 2019, this increased at the same rate as the UK from 2018. The WMCA average resident earnings were 97% of the UK average of £30,353, there is a shortfall of £931.

In 2019, 79.3% of WMCA employees were earning above the national living wage foundation rates which has increased at a slightly faster rate at 3pp compared to 2.8pp. However, earnings earning above the national average in the WMCA is still below the UK average of 79.9%.    

There were 207,635 claimants aged 16 years and over in May 2020 in the WMCA (3 LEP) –this is an increase of 36,390 claimants since April 2020. This increase equates to 21.3% for the WMCA (3 LEP) compared to 26.6% growth for the UK. There were 41,225 youth claimants in the WMCA (3 LEP) area in May 2020, this is an increase of 8,775 people compared to April 2020. This equates to an increase of 27.0%–while the UK increased by 32.3%. . 

Similar patterns can be seen for claimants aged 18-64 years old in the WMCA, with 169,850 claimants in April 2020, an increase of 67.2% since March 2020. The UK has increased by 67.2% since the previous month.