Monday 19 August 2019

Unemployment benefit claims in Ireland hit 11-year low

(Stock picture)
(Stock picture)

Shawn Pogatchnik

The number of people claiming unemployment benefits has fallen to an 11-year low, the Central Statistics Office reported yesterday.

Some 206,396 people signed on for benefits in July, 12pc fewer than a year ago. In seasonally adjusted terms, the register of those on unemployment support fell 12.6pc to 190,300 - the smallest total since February 2008. The number of men claiming declined by 13.7pc to 108,936, women by 9.9pc to 97,460.

The number of long-term claimants - those on the register for at least a year - has fallen since July 2018 by 19.1pc to 76,658.

Yesterday’s figures do not provide a precise measure of joblessness in Ireland, because they include more than 37,000 people working casually and part-time who remain eligible for income supplements.

Ireland’s official unemployment rate for July, published earlier this week, stands at 4.6pc compared to 5.8pc a year ago. It rose marginally from June’s rate of 4.5pc, reflecting summertime benefits claims by students and teachers.

Average unemployment across the 19-nation eurozone stands at 7.5pc - the lowest level recorded since July 2008, before the global credit crisis hit.

Unemployment in the full 28-nation European Union has fallen to 6.3pc - a record low dating back to the January 2000 start of Eurostat’s monthly reporting of EU unemployment data.

The Czechs have the EU’s lowest unemployment rate at 1.9pc. Greece tops the table on 17.6pc.

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