Figures released today for the period April – June 2016 show that the Northern Ireland Labour Force Survey unemployment rate was 6.0% – a decrease of 0.1 percentage points over the quarter and 0.5 percentage points over the year.
More recent figures for July 2016 show that the number of claimants in receipt of unemployment related benefits stood at 36,100, a decrease of 600 over the month. This shows a fall of 6,900 in the unemployment claimant figures over the last 12 months.
The employment rate (69.0%) was unchanged over the quarter and increased by 1.3 percentage points over the year to April – June 2016, while the economic inactivity rate increased over the quarter by 0.2 percentage points but decreased over the year to 26.4% by 1.1 percentage points.
Commenting on the figures, Economy Minister Simon Hamilton said: “Creating more and better jobs is a key priority for me so it is great that the unemployment level in Northern Ireland continues to head in the right direction.
“I am encouraged to see almost 7,000 fewer people on the unemployment register compared to one year ago. The Northern Ireland unemployment rate is also continuing to head in the right direction, reducing by 0.5 percentage points over the year to 6.0%, and comparing very favourably to the European Union average of 8.6%.”
Minister Hamilton continued: “Our employment rate now stands at 69%, an upward rise over the year with 21,000 more people in employment. Employment opportunities are continuing to develop in Northern Ireland and we are successfully competing with other locations worldwide for major job investments. We will continue to work hard to build on this progress as we seek to achieve our aim of building a globally competitive economy.”