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12th of July 2011
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Irish unemployment rate hits 11.9%

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by Kay Mitchell

The Central Statistics Office has revealed that Irish unemployment hit a 13-year high in June, taking the unemployment rate up to 11.8%.

Ireland was the first euro zone country to enter recession and has the second-worst jobless rate in the European Union, behind Spain.

Meanwhile, the number of people claiming jobless benefits in Ireland has nearly doubled over the last 12 months to 418,592.

In June, 21,721 more people were claiming unemployment benefits than had been in the previous month.

Ireland experienced a property boom since the late 1990s, with multinationals arriving to take advantage of one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the euro zone.

However, the ailing housing market has had a major impact on the economy and property prices have plunged by more than 40% since their high in 2006.

In April, the country’s Government unveiled an emergency budget after admitting that the country’s budget deficit was spiralling out of control.

The country’s woes have led Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman, to say that the Irish economy will take almost five years to recover.

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News posted: July 2, 2009

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