Number of people out of work rises by 4.6%

The number of local people out of work and claiming unemployment benefits increased by 4.6 per cent last month, according to the government's latest figures.

The February Labour Market Report reveals that during January there were 1,324 claimants in the Lisburn and Castlereagh area - 887 men and 437 women.

That represents a rise of 4.6 per cent (58 claimants) from the previous month, but a fall of 13.9 per cent (214 claimants) over the past year.

The area’s claimant count now stands at 1.5 per cent of the working age population - the joint lowest among the 11 council areas.