Almost 200 more people in Bognor Regis and Littlehampton were out of work late last year compared to 12 months earlier.
The latest claimant count from the towns’ Jobcentres said the 1,696 were claiming jobseeker’s allowance. That was an extra 184 on the same period in 2018.
But the number was still nine per cent lower than in 2014.
However, the Office for National Statistics has warned the statistics were no longer exact comparisions because of the introduction of universal credit.
A spokesman for the Jobcentres said: “In Littlehampton and Bognor Regis, we continue to work closely with the Arun Business Partnership and local providers to give opportunities to our citizens to secure and maintain employment.”