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Redundancies soared in Northern Ireland before coronavirus outbreak hit, figures show

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Another 200 people claimed unemployment benefit the latest figures show.

Another 200 people claimed unemployment benefit the latest figures show.

Another 200 people claimed unemployment benefit the latest figures show.

There were 557 redundancies proposed during March in the run-up to the coronavirus lockdown- up from 99 the month before, according to government figures.

According to the claimant count measure of unemployment, another 200 people also signed on to claim unemployment benefit during the month.

The labour market statistics also said the number of confirmed redundancies in Northern Ireland had soared by nearly 30% over the last year from 2,359 to 3,050.

The Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency said the latest unemployment rate for December to February was estimated at 2.5% - a slight increase of 0.2 percentage points over the quarter.

However, the jobless rate here remains well below the UK rate of 4% and the Republic’s rate for 4.8% for January.

However, as the research on the unemployment rate was carried out on March 12, it does not reflect the impact of coronavirus on the jobs market.

And the employment rate - the percentage of those aged 16 to 64 who are in work - fell slightly over the quarter at 72.5%. The rate of economic inactivity - covering those who are neither in work nor looking for work - was steady at 25.6%.

Belfast Telegraph