According to data from the Central Statistics Office (CSO), the total number of individuals receiving the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) or on the Live Register decreased by 9.7%, to 214,019, over the month to February 2022.
According to a statement published on the CSO’s website, 53,706 persons were in receipt of the PUP during the last week of February of this year, which was a decrease of 21,704 from January 2022, and a decrease of 417,659 from February of last year.
Some 58.9% of the 53,706 individuals who were in receipt of the PUP for the week ending 27 February 2022 were male, 68.9% were Irish, and approximately a quarter were in each of the 35-44 (25.6%) and 45-54 (22.7%) age groups, while 46.7% of the 269,393 individuals currently estimated to have been directly supported by the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) in January 2022 were male and 53.3% were female, according to the CSO.
The statement published on the CSO’s website also noted that the unadjusted Live Register total stood at 163,248 for February of this year, and that the seasonally adjusted Live Register total for February of this year was 162,800 – down by 1,400 from January 2022.
Some 493,889 persons were benefitting from the PUP or the EWSS or on the Live Register in January 2022 – down from 953,299 in January of the previous year, according to the CSO.
Statement By CSO Statistician
The statement published on the CSO’s website included a statement from CSO statistician Morgan O’Donnell that said, “The unadjusted Live Register total for February 2022 was 163,248. When seasonal effects are considered, the seasonally adjusted Live Register total for February 2022 was 162,800, which is a decrease of 1,400 persons from January 2022.
“Outside of the traditional Live Register, in the last week of February 2022, 53,706 people were in receipt of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment [PUP]. There were 417,659 fewer persons in receipt of the PUP at the end of February 2022 than at the end of February 2021. Users should consider the impact of government restrictions when comparing the numbers of people in receipt of the PUP at different points in time. It is also necessary to take into consideration that the PUP was closed to new applicants on 8 July 2021, before being reopened for individuals, including the self-employed, who lost their employment on or after 7 December 2021 until 22 January 2022, following the introduction of Covid-19-related public health restrictions.”
O’Donnell continued, “The CSO have included monthly estimates of the number of persons being supported by the EWSS up to January 2022 in the Live Register release and in the PxStat series LRM20 . While the PUP and the Live Register are weekly schemes, the availability of the EWSS data depends on an employee’s pay frequency, which could be weekly, fortnightly, every four weeks, or monthly. Because of these differing pay frequencies – and the time it takes for employers to lodge payslip data with the Revenue Commissioners before it is made available to the CSO for dissemination purposes – there is a lag on the availability of the EWSS estimates in the same way there was for the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) estimates in 2020.
“Of the 269,393 persons currently estimated to have been directly supported by the EWSS in January 2022, 46.7% were male and 53.3% were female, while 25.7% were aged under 25 and 74.3% were aged 25 years and over.
“The total number of persons that were on the Live Register or who benefitted from the Covid-19 income supports – PUP, TWSS or EWSS – to January 2022 has also been made available.
“In January 2022, 493,889 persons were on the Live Register or were benefitting from the PUP, TWSS or the EWSS. Of those, 51.3% were male and 48.7% were female, while 19.1% were aged under 25 and 80.9% were aged 25 years and over. The number of persons supported by all schemes was down from the 953,299 recorded in January 2021. January 2022 is the current low point of that series – 493,889 – while November 2021 – 503,333 – is the next-lowest point of the series. The current high point of the series was reached in April 2020 – 1,179,251. The Covid-19 income support schemes were introduced in March 2020, and the first payment of the PUP referred to the week ending 22 March 2020, while the TWSS was first paid on 24 March 2020, but could relate to earlier payslips.”
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