In its Annual Survery of Hours and Earnings, the Office of National Statistics recently published some very encouraging economic data regarding the Buckinghamshire area:

  • Median full-time earnings for those working in Buckinghamshire rose by 2.0 per cent in 2012 to stand at £28,581, a rate of increase well above the 1.2 per cent recorded across the country as a whole;
  • Buckinghamshire and all its districts continue to have residence based earnings above the national and South East levels, ranking 2nd among the 27 county council areas;
  • By constituency, only Aylesbury has residence based earnings below the national median for full-time workers with Beaconsfield and Buckingham, 32nd and 52nd in the country respectively with median annual full-time pay at £34,939, and £33,246. For gross annual mean full time earnings, Chesham and Amersham ranks 16th at £51,770, just behind 11th placed Beaconsfield (£54,477) and ahead of Buckingham (31st, £46,705);
  • The gap in earnings between those living and working in Buckinghamshire closed for the first time since 2007, reducing to 16.0 per cent from 18.3 per cent in 2011. [Buckinghamshire has the widest gap between the earnings of residents and workers of all county council areas at all quartiles]

This good news builds on recent unemployment statistics for my Wycombe constituency. In October 2012, the number of unemployed claimants was 2,014, representing a rate of 4.0% of the economically active population (between the ages of 16 and 64). The number of claimants is 66 lower than in October 2011. This ranks favourably as the 398th highest of the 650 UK constituencies.

These statistics reflect the success of work apprenticeship schemes, of which Wycombe has been a leader in the South East. The Wycombe area encompasses a diverse range of businesses, and it is clear that investing in young, local talent is effective at reducing unemployment and promoting continued prosperity.

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