May 2018 Unemployment Figures

On June 6th, the Central Statistics Office (CSO) published the Monthly Unemployment (MU) figures for May 2018. There were 139,000 people unemployed, down 15,600 people on May 2017. The unemployment rate was 5.8%, down 0.8% on the year.

Looking at these figures from an age perspective, there were 106,700 people aged between 25-74 years who were unemployed and their unemployment rate was 5%. In May 2017 these figures stood at 111,600 and 5.4% respectively.

Looking at younger unemployed people, for those aged between 15-24 years, there were 32,300 people unemployed and their unemployment rate was 11.9% in May 2018. The last time youth unemployment was under 12% was May 2008, when there were 50,900 young people classified as unemployed and their unemployment rate was 11.6%.

On June 8th, the CSO published the Live Register for May 2018. According to these figures there were 223,502 people on the Register, a drop of 14.9% over the year. The CSO divides the country into 8 regions and over the year the Register figures fell across all of them. Looking at the Register from an age perspective young people, aged under 25 years, account for 11% of the Register. Looking at it from a gender perspective, women account for 42.9%.  

94,697 people, or 42.4% of the Register, were on it for more than a year, a decline of 16.8% on May 2017.  Of this figure 54,028 people were on the Register for 3 years and over, accounting for 24.2% of all the people on the Live Register. A year ago this figure stood at 66,432 people, and accounted for a higher percentage of the Register a year ago, at 25.3%. The age group with the largest number of people in this position was people aged 60-64 years of age, 12,329 people, with more than half of this group being classified as ‘other registrants’. The next two largest age groups were those aged 45-55 years, with 11,969 people; and those aged 35-44 years with 11,378 people in this position. The majority of these registrants were classified as ‘Jobseeker’s allowance applications’.

In the annex to the Live Register figures, the CSO publishes data on participation on activation programmes. These figures lag a month behind the Live Register ones and so, in April 2018, there were 58,900 people participating on employment, education and training programmes. This represents a drop of 11.8% over the year. A 10.9% drop in the numbers of people participating on employment programmes accounts for 58.2% of the overall decrease on activation programmes. Participation on two of these programmes continued to drop dramatically: JobBridge by 100% to 0 participants; and Gateway by 97.7% over the past year to 8 participants. Participation on education and training programmes also fell by 13.3%, to 21,547 learners.

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