Number of PUP claimants jumped by more than 10,000 last week

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The number of people claiming the pandemic unemployment payment (PUP) jumped by 10,801 last week, new figures show.

It is the first weekly increase since the number of people on the scheme peaked at 602,107 at the start of May.

Figures released by the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show that in the last week of September, 217,142 people were in receipt of the payment.

Of the 217,142 people, 54.5 per cent were men, 69.6 per cent were Irish and almost a quarter are in each of the 25 to 34-year-old and 35 to 44-year-old age groups.

The CSO released two different unemployment figures for the month stating that it has provided details of Covid-19 income support payments separately.

The seasonally adjusted Live Register total for September stood at 215,400 people, which was an increase of 1,600 from August.

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Catalina Gonzalez, CSO statistician, explained: “The income support payments are not captured in the traditional methodology of the Live Register which is a historical series that includes the number of claimants for Jobseekers Benefit and Jobseekers Assistance.

“A review of non-recipient Live Register claims is ongoing at the DEASP (Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection) and relates primarily to cases where a person who received a PUP has since closed their PUP claim and reported a return to employment.

“This will impact the Live Register totals, as some of these non-recipient jobseeker claims were included on the Live Register, but their jobseeker claims were not automatically closed at that time.”


The Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) was replaced by the employment wage subsidy scheme (EWSS) last month.

The CSO said it does not yet have access to data from the Revenue Commissioners for September.

A breakdown of the numbers receiving the PUP each week shows that 45,552 people under the age of 25 were in receipt of the payment.

The figures also show that 719,224 people have received at least one payment since the scheme was established in March this year, of which 56.3 per cent are men and 48.2% are aged between 25 and 44 years of age.

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