LEADING shops are hiring staff to cope with expected Christmas demand, while the numbers on the live register have decreased according to the latest official figures.
Brown Thomas is one of the many retailers who have announced plans to hire seasonal staff this Christmas.
Brown Thomas said it would take in some 150 staff for its flagship Grafton Street store as well as the nearby BT2 store, BT2 Dundrum and BT2 Blanchardstown.
The shop said employees would be working on a full-time and part-time basis for the busy Christmas and New Year period.
Marks & Spencer will also be creating more than 100 temporary and permanent jobs to cover for the season at the Kildare Village Shopping Centre.
Another 100 positions will become available as it opens a new store in Cork this November, its 21st in Ireland.
The jobs news comes in the same week as the Shelbourne Hotel went about recruiting 40 new members of staff.
More than 400 people lined up outside the venue on Tuesday in the hope of securing a place there.
The recruitment drives appear to confirm the latest CSO figures, which saw a decrease in dole numbers this month -- unemployment dropped from 13.8pc last month to 13.7pc in September.
The figures show the number of people on the Live Register this month fell for the first time since February 2010.
Despite the seemingly positive news, the number of professionals signing on is still 12pc higher than it was at the beginning of 2010.
And experts have warned that the fall in numbers could be the consequence of increased emigration and a rise in the number of people returning to education -- most university courses would have started this month.
Overall, this year saw five per cent more people registered on the Live Register than last year.