THE number of people claiming unemployment benefits in Wirral fell again last month, according to figures which show employment at record levels nationally.

Data from the Office for National Statistics, out today, shows the number of Wirral claimants dropped to 4,315.

According to the ONS, 32.13 million people are now in work nationally.

Matt Hughes, senior ONS statistician, said: "Another record high employment rate and record low inactivity rate suggest the labour market continues to be strong.

"In particular, the number of people aged 16 to 64 not in the labour force because they are looking after family or home is the lowest since records began, at less than 2.1 million.

"Despite earnings rising by 2.1% in cash terms over the last year, the real value of people’s earnings is down 0.4%."

Commenting on the fall in Wirral unemployment benefit claims, Conservative councillor for Heswall Kathy Hodson said: "It's good news for Wirral families and our local economy that more people than ever before are in work as 3,000 people have moved off benefits and into work over the last four years.

"The credit for this belongs to those individuals who have found work, the staff at JobCentre Plus who have helped and supported them and, of course, the businesses that have created the jobs.

"It's particularly good to see the number of young people out of work down again – 800 fewer 18-21 year olds in Wirral are out of work compared to 2013."