Economy Minister Simon Hamilton has welcomed the latest labour market figures which show a further decrease in the unemployment rate and the number of people claiming unemployment benefits.
Figures released today for the period July – September 2016 show that the Northern Ireland Labour Force Survey unemployment rate was 5.6% - a decrease of 0.4 percentage points over the quarter and 0.3 percentage points over the year.
Minister Hamilton said: “This is positive news for our economy. Our unemployment rate is now the lowest it has been since October - December 2008. The rate is also well below the European Union (8.6%) rate for August and the Republic of Ireland (7.9%) rate for September 2016. In addition, the figures in relation to the number of claimants in receipt of unemployment related benefits for October 2016 stand at 34,000. This is another positive decrease of 700 over the month and a fall of 5,900 over the year.
“I also welcome the increase in the employment rate to 69.9%, up over the year by 2.1 percentage points to July - September 2016. This is the highest rate recorded since the quarterly series began in 1995. We have also witnessed the lowest economic inactivity rate in these latest statistics since the series began, at a rate of 25.8% and down 1.9 percentage points over the year.
“Attracting investment and bringing more and better jobs to Northern Ireland is a major priority for me. With our local economy continuing to strengthen and perform well, I am committed to building on this progress to achieve the overall aim of creating a globally competitive economy which benefits all our population.”
Notes to editors:
- Further information on the latest labour market figures is available in the NISRA website and from the Northern Ireland Executive website
- General information can be obtained from Andrew Mawhinney, Economic & Labour Market Statistics Branch, on Tel: 028 9052 9668.
- For media enquiries, please contact DfE Press Office on 028 9052 9604. Outside office hours, please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699 715 440 and your call will be returned.
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