Fewer people out of work in Cookstown and Magherafelt

Jobs market
Jobs market

The number of jobless claimants in Cookstown and Magherafelt continue to fall.

Figures released by the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Investment, show that the number of claimants in Cookstown during March was 941.

Of these 607 were males and 334 females.

The figure represents a fall of 32 on the previous month and a drop of 138 compared to the same month last year.

In Magherafelt Council area, the number of claimants fell by 61 to a new total of 1093 (718 males, 315 females).

This represents a year on year decrease of 175.

The downward trend continued in Dungannon Council area with the March total showing 1,410 claimants (874 males, 536 females).

Overall in Northern Ireland there were 57,696 claimants in March 2014.

Figures released today for March 2014 show that the number of unemployment benefit claimants continues to fall, decreasing by 700 over the month.

Commenting on the figures, Enterprise Minister Arlene Foster said: “It is encouraging that the number of unemployment benefit claimants continues to fall and has done so in each of the last 14 months.

“This is the most sustained fall in unemployment claimants since June 1995.

“The rate of unemployment in Northern Ireland (7.7%) is above that of the UK (6.9%) but compares favourably to the rates in the European Union (10.8%) and the Republic of Ireland (11.9%).”

Fourth quarter results for 2013 from NISRA’s Composite Economic Index indicated that economic activity increased by 0.6% over the quarter in real terms. The Index was also up (by 2.6%) over the year and has returned to levels previously reached in Q4 2010.

Arlene Foster continued: “This is good news in relation to economic performance, with the NI Composite Economic Index showing three consecutive quarterly increases to Q4 2013, culminating in an increase of 2.6% over the year. These increases were driven by the private sector.

“The various business confidence surveys also continue to give us reasons to be to be positive about the prospects for further improvements in business and economic conditions.