August 28, 2018 / 10:21 AM / in 8 months

Ireland to tweak unemployment data methodology after sharp July revision

FILE PHOTO: A bird flies over Dublin Port at sunrise in Dublin, Ireland November 8, 2017. REUTERS/Clodagh Kilcoyne/File Photo

DUBLIN (Reuters) - Ireland said on Monday it planned to tweak its methodology for calculating the monthly unemployment rate, after the statistics agency (CSO) revised its July reading up to 5.9 percent from an initial 5.1 percent.

Ireland’s unemployment rate is at its lowest level since May 2008, down from a peak of 16 percent hit in 2012 in the wake of a banking crisis and international bailout.

The revision was made following a quarterly survey of the labour market which is used as a benchmark for the monthly number.

That found that unemployment had fallen from 5.9 percent in the first quarter to 5.8 percent in the second.

Economist Conall MacCoille of Davy Stockbrokers said the revision appeared to be the result of updated migration data for 2017 that caused the CSO to revise up its estimate for labour force growth to 2.5 percent in the second quarter from a year earlier.

Total Irish employment was up 3.4 percent in the second quarter compared to a year earlier, the CSO said.

Reporting by Conor Humphries; editing by John Stonestreet

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