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From boom to bust in one set of CSO data

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Stock photo: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

Stock photo: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

PA

Stock photo: Joe Giddens/PA Wire

The Central Statistics Office published its quarterly deep dive into the jobs market here today.

The Labour Force Survey is usually a key piece of information showing trends in jobs that looks well beyond the headline numbers of the monthly publications.

Today however it was like looking into a museum of a pre-lockdown Ireland of plentiful jobs and full employment.

The CSO said that at the end of March, using standard data, the number of people in work rise in the quarter by 51,500, bringing total employment to 2,353,500.

There was no change in jobless figures in the quarter as the number of people unemployed using standard remained at 114,000, or 4.7pc.

The CSO data captured just two weeks of lockdown and the situation has now changed dramatically with almost 700,000 workers now listed as jobless, or more than 28pc of the workforce.

Minister for Finance Paschal Donohoe said that the numbers would improve as the economy reopened.

"My Department is projecting the unemployment rate to approach 10pc by the end of the year, with an average unemployment rate of around 14pc across the year as a whole," Mr Donohoe said in a statement.

The Department forecasts show it expects 115,000 jobs to return next year, a number that would imply a strong economic bounce back with job creation levels more than double the 67,000 average of the past seven years in which the economy here has boomed.

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