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Economic Performance

Unemployment Rate up to 10.4%

In a further indication of the rapidity of the decline in Irish economic activity, the CSO‘s Live Register release reports a standardised unemployment rate of 10.4% in February up from 5.0% one year earlier.  One reason the figure is so high is that unemployment rates from previous months were revised up (January’s rate was revised up from 9.2% to 9.6%) as they were benchmarked to the QNHS estimates for September-November.   (Brendan Walsh had predicted such a revision in his post on the QNHS release.) Even controlling for that, the pace at which the economy is contracting is remarkable.

3 replies on “Unemployment Rate up to 10.4%”

I remember that at the Crisis Conference in mid-December, Morgan Kelly said that rather than the unemployment rate reaching 10% by the end of 09 (which was the most recent government forecast at the time), it was probably pretty much already at that rate once account was taken of processing backlogs. He then forecast 15% by year end (to an audible sharp intake of breath). Is it my imagination, or is 15% looking a bit optimistic at this stage?

If we allow for the likely reduction of the labour force when the Q1 QNHS estimates is published the true figure right now is likely to be closer to 12% than 10.4%.

15% by year end looks like an absolute certainty at this stage.

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