Northern Ireland

Northern Ireland unemployment figures rise to 8.4%

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Image caption The unemployment rate in Northern Ireland is higher than in the UK as a whole

Unemployment has risen in Northern Ireland, new figures show, but in the UK as a whole it has dropped.

The new rate of 8.4% is 1.5 percentage points higher than last year's figure.

More people are claiming unemployment benefit too. 68,400 people signed on in March, or 7.2% of the workforce. One hundred more people claimed unemployment benefit in March than in February.

Nearly 300 people were made redundant in Northern Ireland in March.

Across the UK, the unemployment rate is 7.9%. It has fallen slightly, by 0.3% since last year.

Unemployment figures in the Republic of Ireland remain higher, at 14.7%.

The figures, from the Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency, were published on the Department of Enterprise, Trade and Industry website on Wednesday.

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