Irish Economy
Irish Live Register + activation numbers at 440,680 in February; Broad jobless rate at 20%
By Michael Hennigan, Finfacts founder and editor
Mar 4, 2015 - 12:02 PM

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The CSO reported today that on a seasonally adjusted basis the Live Register total recorded a monthly decrease of 4,300 (-1.2%) in February 2015, reducing the seasonally adjusted total to 355,600. Together with 85,080 in publicly funded activation schemes (January data are the latest available), the total number of unemployed in receipt of public support is 440,680, giving a broad jobless rate of 20%.

In unadjusted terms there were 355,124 people signing on the Live Register in February 2015. This represents an annual decrease of 42,945 (-10.8%).

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Finfacts has two ways of arriving at the Irish broad rate a) as above, adding LR and activation schemes figures 2) using the standardised rate as detailed below and adding both the number of part-timers looking for full-time work and activation numbers. Using the latter calculation last week based on Quarterly National Household Survey data for the end of December 2014, we calculated a rate of 19%.

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The standardised unemployment rate (SUR) — based on the International Labour Organisation (ILO) definition of employment being at least 1 hour of paid work in a week —  in February 2015 was 10.1%, down from the revised figure of 10.3% in January 2015. The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate from the most recent Quarterly National Household Survey (QNHS) was 10.4% in the fourth quarter of 2014.

The CSO notes that the LR includes part-time workers (those who work up to three days a week), seasonal and casual workers entitled to Jobseeker’s Benefit (JB) or Jobseeker’s Allowance (JA). It says "unemployment is measured by the QNHS and the latest estimated number of persons unemployed as of the fourth quarter of 2014 was 213,600."

There were 27,720 new registrants on the Live Register in February 2015, consisting of 11,373 Jobseeker’s Benefit (JB) claims, 14,952 Jobseeker’s Allowance (JA) claims and 1,395 ‘Other Registrants’. Males accounted for 53.3% (14,770) and females 46.7% (12,950) of all new registrants. On average 3,693 male and 3,238 female new registrants joined the Live Register each week of the month. The difference between the number of new registrants on the Live Register and the change in the total number on the Live Register is accounted for by closed claims and movements between schemes.

The number of long term claimants (1 year or more) on the Live Register in February 2015 was 162,776 including 56,146 females. The number of male long term claimants decreased by 16,836 (-13.6%) in the year to February 2015, while females decreased by 884 (-1.6%), giving an overall annual decrease of 17,720 (-9.8%) in the number of long term claimants.

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