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Statistical Press Release - Northern Ireland Labour Market Statistics:

Northern Ireland Executive
19 Jul 2022, 21 GMT+10

Labour Market Statistics

The labour market statistics were published today by the Northern Ireland Statistics & Research Agency.

Labour market statistics published

Payrolled employee numbers have increased for the tenth consecutive month

  • The number of employees receiving pay through HMRC PAYE in NI in June 2022 was 775,400, a marginal increase (less than 0.1%) over the month and an increase of 2.8% over the year.  This is the highest on record and the tenth consecutive monthly increase.
  • Earnings from the HMRC PAYE indicated that NI employees had a median monthly pay of Pound 1,960 in June 2022, an increase of Pound 16 (0.8%) over the month and an increase of Pound 123 (6.7%) over the year. 

Claimant Count (Experimental Series) remains higher than pre-pandemic count

  • In June 2022, the seasonally adjusted number of people on the claimant count was 36,100 (3.8% of the workforce), which is an increase of 0.1% from the previous month's revised figure.  This slight increase over the month to June is the first reported increase since February 2021.  The June claimant count remains higher than the pre-pandemic count in March 2020 (by 21%).

Lowest annual total of confirmed redundancies in time series

  • NISRA, acting on behalf of the Department for the Economy, received confirmation that 40 redundancies occurred in June 2022.  At 1,360, the annual total was the lowest figure in the time series.
  • There were 470 proposed redundancies in June 2022, the highest number proposed this year.  Over the year July 2021 to June 2022, 2,080 redundancies were proposed, 71% less than in the previous 12 months.

Labour Force Survey (LFS) headline measures

  • The latest NI seasonally adjusted unemployment rate (the proportion of economically active people aged 16 and over who were unemployed) for the period March-May 2022 was estimated from the Labour Force Survey at 2.6%.  This was a decrease of 0.4 percentage points (pps) over the quarter and of 1.6pps over the year.  The annual change was statistically significant.
  • The proportion of people aged 16 to 64 in work (the employment rate) increased by 0.7pps over the quarter and by 2.7pps over the year to 70.1%.  The annual change was statistically significant.  The total number of weekly hours worked in NI (28.0 million) increased by 6.2% over the quarter and by 9.9% over the year.
  • The economic inactivity rate (the proportion of people aged 16 to 64 who were not working and not seeking or available to work) decreased by 0.4pps over the quarter and by 1.6pps over the year to 28.0%.  Neither the quarterly nor annual changes were statistically significant.


  • The latest employee data shows a record high for payrolled employees, following a marginal increase in June, and the level of payroll earnings also continue to exceed pre-pandemic levels.  The number of proposed collective redundancies in June is notably high, but follows a year of low numbers of redundancy proposals and the lowest number of annual confirmed redundancies since 2000.
  • Measures of total employment (e.g. employment rate and hours worked), unemployment and economic inactivity, although showing trends of improvement, have not yet returned to their pre-pandemic position.
  • The latest HMRC payroll data showed the highest level of payrolled employees on record in June, following a marginal increase (less than 0.1%) from the previous month.  Payrolled employees are now 3.0% above those recorded in March 2020 pre-COVID.  Earnings recorded for June were up by 6.7% over the year and are now 12% above pre-COVID levels.
  • The Labour Force Survey shows statistically significant changes in the employment (increase) and unemployment (decrease) rates over the year to March-May 2022.  When compared to pre-pandemic levels, the total number of hours worked in March-May 2022 was 2.6% below, whilst the employment rate was 2.4pps below.  The economic inactivity rate remains 2.4pps above the pre-pandemic position and the unemployment rate sits just 0.1pps above the pre-pandemic period.
  • The slight increase (0.1%) over the month to June in the NI Claimant Count is the first reported increase since February 2021, where the latest count (36,100) is 44% less than the recent peak in May 2020.

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