Sat 6th Jul 2013
DETI Statistical Press Release
DEPARTMENT OF ENTERPRISE, TRADE AND INVESTMENT
14 September 2011
Statistical Press Release
A National Statistics press release, detailing the latest labour market figures have been published today by the Northern Ireland Statistics & Research Agency (NISRA). It can be accessed via
Labour Force Survey – Unemployment
• The Northern Ireland seasonally adjusted unemployment rate2, as measured by the Labour Force Survey (LFS), was estimated at 7.4% for the period May – July 2011. This represented an increase from the rate of 7.2% in the previous quarter and an increase from the rate of 6.8% recorded in the same period last year. The Northern Ireland unemployment rate remained below the UK average rate (7.9%) and was also lower than the European Union (9.4%) and Republic of Ireland (14.2%) rates for June 2011.
• Unadjusted LFS estimates for May – July 2011 show that 45.4% of those unemployed in Northern Ireland have been unemployed for one year or more. They also record the unemployment rate for 18-24 year olds at 18.3%.
Claimant Count Unemployment
• The seasonally adjusted number of people claiming unemployment related benefits5 stood at 60,400 in August 2011 – up 100 (0.2%) from the previous month. The latest monthly increase in Northern Ireland (0.2%) was the lowest among the UK regions and compared to a monthly rise of 1.3% in the UK as a whole. Over the year, the Northern Ireland claimant count has increased by 5.0% (2,900), which was lower than the percentage increase in the UK (7.8%).
Quarterly Employment Survey – Employee Jobs
• Seasonal adjusted estimates from the Quarterly Employment Survey7 showed that there were 699,650 employee jobs in June 2011. This represented a decrease over the quarter of 1,830 jobs (-0.3%) and an annual decrease of 9,890 jobs (-1.4%). The employee jobs series has now decreased for eleven of the last twelve quarters8, since its peak in Q2 2008. Please note that the original estimates for the period December 2010 to March 2011, first published in June 2011, indicated a small quarterly increase of 0.1%, however these have now been revised downwards to show a decrease of (-0.1%).
• The decrease in jobs over the quarter to June 2011 consisted of a fall in Service Sector (-1,520 jobs) and Construction (-500 jobs) jobs. However the Manufacturing sector ( 70 jobs) and Other Industries ( 110 jobs) both experienced marginal increases.
Labour Force Survey – Economic Inactivity
• The seasonally adjusted number of working age9 persons that were economically inactive decreased by 6,000 (-1.7%) over the quarter and the corresponding working age economic inactivity rate decreased to 27.2% (in May – July 2011). However, the Northern Ireland inactivity rate (27.2%) remained above the UK average rate (23.3%) and was the highest rate among the twelve UK regions.
• Unadjusted LFS estimates can provide information on the reason for economic inactivity. In May – July 2011 an estimated 31% of the economically inactive of working age in Northern Ireland were sick/disabled, 29% were students, 22% were looking after the family/home, 12% were retired and 6% were ‘other’ reason.
• 91 confirmed redundancies10-12 were notified in August 2011, compared to 195 in July 2011 and 168 in August 2010. There has been a 36% decrease in the number of confirmed redundancies over the last year to 31st August 2011 – 1,880 compared to 2,936 in the previous year.
Notes to editors:
1. From the 1st April 2011, the responsibility for the collection of data and production of official labour market and economic statistics transferred from the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment to the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency (DFP). This transfer mirrored the position in Great Britain where most business surveys and labour market data collection and statistical production have been transferred from the departments with policy responsibilities to the Office for National Statistics (ONS). However, it is important to note that there are no planned changes to the production of economic and labour market statistical publications and outputs as a result of the transfer.
2. The Labour Force Survey (LFS) measure of unemployment used in Northern Ireland labour market statistical publications is consistent with the International Labour Organisation measure. An explanation of the difference between the LFS and Claimant Count measures of unemployment can be found at http://www.detini.gov.uk/deti-stats-index/stats-labour-market/stats-labour-market-unemployment.htm
3. The official measure of unemployment is sourced to the LFS and refers to people without a job who were available for work and had either looked for work in the four weeks prior to interview or were waiting to start a job they had already obtained. This definition is consistent with that recommended by the International Labour Office. Unemployment estimates for the European Union and the Republic of Ireland are sourced to EUROSTAT.
4. The figures released today contain data from a number of different sources. The unemployment, employment and economic inactivity rates are sourced to the LFS and refer to the period May – July 2011. It should be noted that the LFS figures are estimates, which are subject to sampling error. This means that the exact figure is likely to be contained in a range surrounding the estimate quoted. For example, the exact number of unemployed persons is 95% likely to fall within /- 11,000 of the quoted estimate.
5. The Claimant Count measure of unemployment relates to August 2011 and is based on claimant data from Jobs and Benefits Office Administrative Systems.
6. Not all those who register for unemployment benefits meet the criteria for LFS unemployment. Conversely, not all those defined as unemployed in the LFS are eligible for unemployment benefits. Estimates of the numbers unemployed may also differ between the two sources due to timing differences.
7. The employee jobs figures are sourced to the Quarterly Employment Survey (QES) and refer to the position at the 6th June 2011(with the quarterly change measured between March 2011 and June 2011). The QES figures are estimates that are subject to sampling error.
8. An increase in employee jobs was recorded between Q3 and Q4 2009. However, this is most likely due to a technical adjustment in the series when it was rebased in line with the 2009 Census of Employment results. For more details of the technical adjustment please follow link: http://www.detini.gov.uk/deti-stats-index/stats-surveys/stats-qes-discontinuity-notice.htm.
9. The ‘working age’ definition, used in the calculation of employment and economic inactivity rates, was changed in August 2010 to include those aged from 16 to 64 for both men and women. Please see link for further details http://www.detini.gov.uk/introduction_of_new_working_age_definition.pdf.
Please note that there are no implications for the headline unemployment rate, which will continue to be based on the economically active population aged 16 and over.
10. Under the Employment Rights (Northern Ireland) Order 1996 companies are only legally required to notify the Department of impending redundancies of 20 or more employees. Any estimates provided are therefore likely to be an underestimate of total job losses, though it is not possible to quantify the extent of the shortfall.
11. Subject to the criteria mentioned above, employers must notify the Department of a) redundancies proposed and b) redundancies confirmed. Where redundancies occur, the confirmed total provides a better indication of real job losses since all proposed redundancies do not actually take place.
12. Redundancies do not necessarily equate to job losses, for example, employees who do not qualify for a redundancy package; those on temporary contracts are not incorporated in redundancy estimates.
13. Details of sampling errors, together with more detailed statistical information and definitions of the methodology used, can be found in the Labour Market Report (LMR) bulletin, which is available on the following website: http://www.statistics.detini.gov.uk/
For media enquiries, please contact DETI Press Office on 028 9052 9297. Outside office hours, please contact the Duty Press Officer via pager number 07699 715 440 and your call will be returned.
General information can be obtained from Martin Monaghan, Economic & Labour Market Statistics Branch, on Tel: 028 9052 9421.