Over 2.5m people in employment with record high

people lining up outside social welfare office

The number of persons in employment increased by 8.7% to 2,554,600 in the year to Q2 2022, with the employment rate of persons aged 15-64 at 73.5%. That is according to new figures from the Central Statistics Office. It is the highest rate since the current series of records began in 1998.

The number of persons aged 15-89 years in employment increased by 205,500 or 8.7% to 2,554,600 persons in the year to Q2 2022. The unadjusted employment rate for persons aged 15-64 years was 73.5%.

Employment increased in the year to Q2 2022 across most economic sectors with the largest increase in the Accommodation & Food Service (+39.2% or +47,300) sector. However, employment in this sector at 168,200 remains below the Q2 2019 level of 180,800.

The number of absences from work (e.g. temporary layoffs from work, family leave, or holidays) during the reference week in Q2 2022 declined by 15.3% to 187,200. This, together with an increase of 8.7% in employment, resulted in an increase of 9.4% or 7.1 million more hours worked per week to a record 83.0 million hours per week in Q2 2022.

The impact on hours worked varied across the different economic sectors. The number of hours worked in Q2 2022 per week was higher than a year ago in almost all sectors. The 4.8 million hours worked per week in the Accommodation & Food Services sector, while up from Q2 2020 (1.2 million), remains below the pre-pandemic (Q2 2019) figure of 5.4 million.

The number of persons aged 15-74 years who were unemployed in Q2 2022 stood at 119,900 with an associated Unemployment Rate of 4.5%.

In Q2 2022, the total number of persons in the labour force was up 5.6% or 141,300 to 2,674,500 from Q2 2021. The number of persons not in the labour force was 1,424,800 which was down 3.9% or 57,900 from a year earlier.

Tánaiste and Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Employment Leo Varadkar said that more people are working in Ireland than ever before and unemployment is at a 21-year low.

“That is incredible given where we were a couple of years ago, with the pandemic and Brexit, and the current challenges we are now facing with Putin’s war and inflation. It is a testament to the hard work and remarkable resilience of Irish enterprise,” Mr Varadkar said in a statement.