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Employment rate at highest level since records began

The employment rate increased to over 74 per cent in the second quarter of 2023, the highest rate since the current series of records began in 1998.

According to the latest Labour Force Survey from the Central Statistics Office (CSO), the number of people in employment increased by 88,400 or 3.5 per cent to 2,643,000 in the second quarter of this year.

The employment rate for females is at 70.5 per cent, its highest level since the series began in 1998.

The CSO figures show that the largest year-on-year increase in employment was recorded in the public administration and defence sector.

The largest percentage decrease was in the agriculture, forestry and fishing sector, which recorded a drop of 6.3 per cent.

Despite recent high-profile lay offs in the tech industry, the numbers employed in the information and communications sector increased on an annual basis by 8,500 to 173,400.

There was also an increase in the numbers working in construction, rising by 2,900 to 170,200.

The number of people who were unemployed in the second quarter of the year stood at 121,200, with an associated unemployment rate of 4.4 per cent.

The youth unemployment rate, for those aged 15-24 years, jumped to 12.2 per cent in the second quarter of the year compared to a figure of 11.4 per cent the previous year.

The CSO said there were 31,900 people in long-term unemployment, an increase of 100 people compared the same period last year.

Meanwhile, the estimated total number of hours worked per week in the three months from April to June increased by 1.1 million hours, or 1.3 per cent, on the 84.1 million hours worked the same time last year, according to the CSO figures.