Unemployment is at it’s lowest rate in seven years according to figures published by the CSO on today. There were 190,600 people unemployed in December 2015, representing a decrease of 29,200 when compared with December 2014.
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for December stood at 8.8%, the lowest it has been since the end of 2008, when the rate was 8.6%.
119,500 (10%) men were without a job last month, representing a decrease of 1,000 when compared to the November figure of 120,500.
Meanwhile, the unemployment figure for women in December stood at 71,100 (7.3%), an increase of 300 from November.
ISME, the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association, welcomed the reduction in the monthly unemployment figures for December, while warning the Government that its continued failure to address rising business costs is slowing jobs growth in the SME sector. Ireland’s jobless rate compares with a current Eurozone average of 10.7%.
Commenting on the figures, Alan McQuaid from Merrion Economics said:
“Although emigration has been a factor to some degree in keeping unemployment down, the labour market has improved dramatically over the past few years, reflecting the strengthening of the economic recovery.
“Employment rose in twelve of the fourteen economic sectors on an annual basis and fell in the other two in the third quarter of 2015, according to the most recent published figures. The greatest rate of increase was posted in the Construction (+13.3% or 15,000) sector. The pick-up in this sector is particularly encouraging given that it was the one that suffered the worst job losses in the economic downturn.”
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