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Number of people ‘signing on’ at lowest since May 2009

The number of people on the Live Register fell by 3,300 last month, according to the Central Statistics Office.

People queue down Cumberland Street, Dun Laoghaire to collect their social welfare payments back in 2009.
People queue down Cumberland Street, Dun Laoghaire to collect their social welfare payments back in 2009.
Image: James Horan/Photocall Ireland

THE NUMBER OF people on the Live Register fell by 3,300 last month, bringing the figure to the lowest its been since May 2009.

The total number of people signing on in the last month of the year was 402,800, representing an annual decrease of 28,322 (or 6.7 per cent).

The number of long term claimants in December 2013 was 179,621, down about 7,523 in the year.

There were also 7,796 fewer people under the age of 25 signing on compared to December 2012. Annual decreases in the younger age category have occurred in all months since July 2010.

Some have pointed to emigration as a major factor in reduced youth unemployment.

“At this time of year families are bidding farewell to emigrants who returned for the holidays. Over the past year 1,700 people emigrated every week,” said Senator David Cullinane.

“The reduction in the register must be viewed in the context of continued mass emigration. A generation is being lost and the government claims this as victory for their policies.”

The Live Register is not an unemployment measure as it includes 81,382 casual and part-time workers.

The standardised unemployment rate now stands at 12.4 per cent, down slighting on November 2013 statistics, says the CSO.

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