Rise in unemployment

THE queue at the Jobs and Benefits Office got significantly longer last month with the unemployment rate in the borough experiencing a sharp rise.

A total of 74 new claimants began signing on for unemployment related benefits in August.

The large increase in the number of claimants could be partly inflated by students who have left university this summer but have been unable to find work.

The total number of claimants in Craigavon now stands at 3,197 (2,189 men and 1,008 women). This represents 5.3% of the population of working age.

During August the unemployment rate rose by 2.4%. Throughout the last year there have been 207 new claimants representing a rise of 6.9%.

The Northern Ireland seasonally adjusted unemployment rate, as measured by the Labour Force Survey, was estimated at 7.4% for the period May to July 2011.

In terms of redundancies the survey revealed in the past 12 months 207 people have lost their jobs in Craigavon.