Belfast Telegraph

Modest drop in unemployment figures

More than 370,000 people remain on the dole despite a slight drop in the unemployment rate, latest figures reveal.

Last month there were 371,400 people signing on the live register, when the figures are adjusted to allow for seasonsal changes in employment.

A report from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) shows that 3,500 fewer signed on than the previous month, while the figure was down over the year by 38,600.

More than one in 10 in the workforce do not have a job.

The unemployment rate is now 11%, a slight decrease from 11.1% in September.

Trends show more men than women are coming off the dole. Last month, 2,900 men signed off compared to just 600 women.

During the year from October last year to last month, almost 29,000 men came off unemployment benefits compared to 8,900 women.

Jobs Minister Richard Bruton admitted that many people are still not feeling the effects of an economic recovery but insisted the country is moving in the right direction.

"The unemployment rate is continuing to fall, more unemployed people are moving into jobs, and the numbers of long-term unemployed people continuing to fall," he said.

"We have a long way to go, and many people are still not feeling the effects, with unemployment at 11%.

"However, today's figures confirm once again that we are on the right track.

"People can have confidence that, if we continue to implement our plan, their sacrifices will not be wasted and sustainable, long-term jobs will continue to grow in this country."

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