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Benefit claimants on the rise

Scotland has seen the largest rise in the number of young claimants of unemployment benefits of all UK regions, a new report by training and education provider Ambitious Minds has suggested.

The report, Plugging the iGeneration into the Jobs Market, outlines a marked north-south divide, with the North East of England, Scotland, and Yorkshire and the Humber hit by youth claimant rises "twice as large as for London and the South East".

Comparing figures from September 2007 with those from July this year, it finds six of the top 10 areas with the largest increases in claimant count were in Scotland.

North Ayrshire and North Lanarkshire, the worst-rated Scottish regions and second in the overall ranking, both saw a rise of 6.1 per cent, while the number of young claimants in East Ayrshire rose by 6 per cent. Clackmannanshire, one of Scotland's smallest local authorities, was ranked sixth, with a rise of 5.8 per cent.

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