Posted on Wednesday 17 September 2014 by Ulster Business

One in five young people out of work in Northern Ireland

One in five young people in Northern Ireland are now out of work, according to latest government statistics

The data, released by the Northern Ireland Statistics & Research Agency (NISRA), pegged the unemployment rate amongst 18-24 year-olds at 20% in the three months to July, an increase of 1.2% from the same period last year, and well above the UK average at 14.9%.

It comes despite a slight dip in the headline unemployment rate to 6.6% and a slight shortening in the dole queue to 52,200.

Deeper reading into the monthly data release also shows an increase of 5,000 in the economically inactive rate to 27.1%.

Often seen as the Achilles heel of the Northern Ireland jobs market, it refers to the percentage of people of working age not actively looking for a job and has remained stubbornly high and again well above the UK average of 22.1%.

Enterprise minister Arlene Foster focused on the headline numbers and pointed to the large number of inward investment job announcements which have emerged from Invest NI over the last few weeks.

“Announcements of new jobs and expansion represent the confidence in companies of our ability here in Northern Ireland to provide professional, qualified and skilled staff,” she said.

And there was some good news from two indexes which measure the health of the production and services sector, also released by NISRA.

The production sector saw output climb by 6.2% in the second quarter of the year compared to the same time last year while the services sector increased by 1%.

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