Unemployment rate tops 10%

The Taoiseach has confirmed that the number of people on the dole increased sharply again last month as the economic recession continues to deepen.

Brian Cowen told the Dáil this morning that more than 354,000 people were on the Live Register in February, up from around 326,000 in January.

The increase pushes the standardised unemployment rate up to 10.4%, compared to 7.7% in the fourth quarter of 2008.

In the year to February 2009, there was an unadjusted increase of 164,952 (+87.1%). This compares with an unadjusted increase of 146,412 (+80.7%) in the year to January 2009.

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