Unemployment hovers above 6%

140,700 people were unemployed in May

unemployment, rate, employment, CSO, figures,

File photo. Image: RollingNews.ie

New figures released by the CSO show that Ireland's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for May 2017 was 6.4%.

That's the same as April's revised rate and down from 8.4% in May 2016.

140,700 people were unemployed last month, compared to more than 180,000 12 months ago.

Mariano Mamertino, EMEA economist at the global job site, Indeed, commented on these statistics:

"Barring an unforeseen economic shock it looks highly likely that the unemployment rate will continue to decline and fall below 6% in the coming months.
 
"The level of youth unemployment has improved significantly on 12 months ago, with 11.7% of 15-24 year olds unemployed in May 2017 compared to 18.0% a year ago ... It is a testimony to the extent of the Irish economic recovery story, that from a peak of 15.1% in the depths of the financial crisis, commentators are now increasingly concerned about the tightness in labour market," he added.

Policy

Meanwhile, the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association (ISME) has called for more focus on the reduction of business costs, to allow SMEs to create more jobs.

Commenting on today's figures ISME, CEO Neil McDonnell said, "The cornerstone of competitiveness for businesses is cost control. Government must tackle high costs of doing business"

"In our recent Government Satisfaction Survey, Governments handling of business costs was scored as unsatisfactory among our members. Government must understand that unless it is economically viable to hire more staff, SMEs cannot do it," he continued.