Unemployment rate declines by 0.1% in February
Number of jobless females unchanged from January to February to 6.8%
The seasonally adjusted number of persons unemployed was 190,900 last month
The unemployment rate fell by 0.1 per cent in February to 8.8 per cent, new figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show.
This marks its lowest level since December 2008. Total numbers unemployed in Ireland have now fallen by 42 per cent from the 327,000 peak recorded in 2011.
Compared to the same month a year ago, the unemployment rate declined by 1.2 per cent with youth unemployment falling from 20.3 per cent in January to 20.1 per cent in February.
The seasonally adjusted number of persons unemployed was 190,900 last month, down 2,000 compared to January and a decrease of 23,400 when compared to February 2015.
The number of unemployed males fell by 1,300 from January to February to 124,900. The seasonally adjusted rate for males was 10.5 per cent, down from 10.6 per cent in January and 11.5 per cent for the same month a year earlier.
The number of unemployed females was 6.8 per cent, unchanged on January but down from 8.2 per cent in February 2015. In February, there were 66,100 unemployed women recorded, down 600 on the prior month.
Davy chief economist Conall Mac Coille said that at face value, the pace of decline in Ireland’s unemployment appears to have slowed over the past 12 months. However, he noted that the more measured rate reflects a pick-up in labour force growth.
His counterpart at Merrion Capital, Alan McQuaid, said that with the economy continuing to grow strongly, an average jobless rate of 8.5 per cent is now envisaged for 2016, with another net increase in employment of close on 50,000.
Euro zone unemployment meanwhile fell for a third consecutive month in January, dropping to its lowest level since August 2011.
New figures from Eurostat reveal the jobless rate declined by 0.1 per cent to 10.3 per cent in the first month of the year with 6.647 million unemployed in the people in the euro zone and 21.789 millon for the European Union as a whole.