Changes to designation of Claimant Count and Jobseeker's Allowance statistics

Previously the headline measure of the Claimant Count included claimants of Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) only. From 17 June 2015 the ONS has changed the headline measure of the Claimant Count to include, for the first time, some claimants of Universal Credit as well as JSA claimants. The Universal Credit estimates do not precisely match the Claimant Count definition, because they include some claimants who are not required to seek work. These estimates are still being developed by the Department for Work and Pensions. It has therefore been decided that the Claimant Count estimates including Universal Credit will be designated as experimental statistics even though they are now the headline measure.

Detailed estimates of Jobseeker’s Allowance (JSA) continue to be available. As these JSA estimates are no longer the best estimate of the number of people claiming unemployment related benefits, the UK Statistics Authority has decided that they should no longer be designated as National Statistics, as explained in correspondence between the National Statistician and the UK Statistics Authority:

ONS have published a Q&A document giving further explanation and details.