Slight rise in NI unemployment rate

Job search on computer terminal The unemployment rate in Northern Ireland is almost half that recorded in the Republic of Ireland

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There has been a slight rise in the unemployment rate in Northern Ireland, according to the latest Labour Force Survey figures.

The rate for the period from October to December 2012 was 7.8%, up by 0.2 percentage points from the previous quarter.

However, there was no change in the monthly figure for the number of people claiming the dole in Northern Ireland.

The total stood at 65,000 for January, the same figure recorded in December.

While there was no change in the local dole claimant count, the latest monthly figure was in contrast to the overall UK figure which fell by 0.8%.

The number of people claiming unemployment- related benefits in Northern Ireland is the second highest among the twelve UK regions.

The unemployment rate in Northern Ireland is now the same as the average rate for the UK.

At 7.8%, it is almost half that recorded in the Republic of Ireland, where the unemployment rate is 14.6%.

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