The number of people receiving the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) or on the live register dropped by 14.1 per cent over the month of May.
New figures from the Central Statistics Office (CSO) show there are currently just under half a million people (477,915) in receipt of the PUP or jobseekers payments.
In the last week of May, 309,515 people were in receipt of the PUP while the unadjusted live register total for May stands at 171,699.
The live register is not designed to measure unemployment and includes part-time, seasonal and casual workers entitled to Jobseekers Benefit or Jobseekers Allowance.
CSO Statistician Catalina Gonzalez said: “The unadjusted live register total for May 2021 is 171,699. When seasonal effects are considered, the seasonally adjusted live register total for May 2021 was 174,200 - a decrease of 6,000 from April 2021.
“Outside of the traditional live register, in the last week of May 2021, 309,515 people were in receipt of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP).
“There are currently 235,155 fewer persons in receipt of the PUP than at the end of May 2020.
“Users should consider the impact of Government restrictions when comparing the numbers of people in receipt of PUP at different points in time.”
Of the people receiving the PUP, almost a quarter were in each of the 25 to 34-year-old (21.9 per cent) and 35 to 44-year-old (21.5 per cent) age groups.
Meanwhile, it is estimated that 844,237 people were on the live register or were benefiting from the PUP or the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) in April - down from 907,019 in March of this year.
Ms Gonzalez said: “While the PUP and the live register are weekly schemes, the availability of the EWSS data depends on an employee’s pay frequency which could be weekly, fortnightly, every four weeks or monthly.
“Because of these differing pay frequencies, and the time it takes for employers to lodge payslip data with the Revenue Commissioners before it is made available to the CSO for dissemination purposes, there is a lag on the availability of the EWSS estimates in the same way there was for the Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) estimates in 2020.
“Of the 311,275 persons currently estimated to have been directly supported by the EWSS in April 2021... 13.9 per cent were aged under 25 and 86.1 per cent were aged 25 years and over.
“The total number of persons that were on the live register or who benefited from the Covid-19 income supports (PUP, TWSS or EWSS) to April 2021 has also been made available today.
“In April 2021, 844,237 persons were on the live register or were benefiting from the PUP, TWSS or the EWSS... The number supported by all schemes was also down from 907,019 in March 2021."
Ms Gonzalez said the total numbers in receipt of income supports have been fluctuating due to the changing levels of restrictions in place.