Labour Force Survey

The Labour Force Survey (LFS) is a quarterly sample survey carried out by interviewing people about their personal circumstances and work.

The Labour Force Survey latest results published 15th May 2018

Latest results

  • The latest NI seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the period January-March 2018 was 3.1%, the lowest on record. The unemployment rate decreased by 0.8 pps from the previous quarter and 2.1 pps over the year (from 5.3%). The annual rate change was statistically significant, i.e. the recorded changes exceeded the variability expected from a sample survey of this size and would, therefore, likely reflect a real change.
  • The latest NI unemployment rate (3.1%) was below the UK average of 4.2% (the joint lowest on record). It was the lowest unemployment rate of the UK regions and was below the European Union (7.1%) rate in February 2018 and the Republic of Ireland (6.1%) rate for March 2018.
  • Figures for January-March 2018 estimated that 51.0% of those unemployed in NI were long-term unemployed (i.e. unemployed for one year or more), compared to 25.3% in the UK.
  • There was an increase (1.0 pps) in the employment rate (69.7%) over the quarter and over the year (1.3pps).  The change in the employment rate was not statistically significant over the quarter or the year. However the increase in the employment rate from 2013 rates is statistically significant.      
  • The economic inactivity rate (28.0%) decreased over the quarter by 0.4 pps and increased by 0.3 pps over the year. Neither change was statistically significant.

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Labour Force Survey

Carly Gordon
Telephone: 028 9025 5172