The live register figures for July show a significant drop of 7 percent in the number of people signing on at the Social Welfare Offices in Laois within the last 12 months.
The latest figures from the Central Statistics Office reveal that last month, a total of 8,724 people signed on at the offices in Portlaoise, Portarlington and Rathdowney, with men accounting for just under 60 percent of the number (5,176) to just over 40 percent women (3,548).
Breaking this down, there were 4,363 signing on in Portlaoise (2,587 men, and 1,776 women); 3,211 in Portarlington (1,891 men, and 1,320 women); and 1,150 in Rathdowney (698 men, and 452 women).
The total of 8,724 was 669 less than the figure recorded in July 2013, when there were 9,393 signing on in Laois (4,642 in Portlaoise, 3,539 in Portarlington, and 1,212 in Rathdowney). This means the local figure has dropped by 7 percent since last July.
However, this year’s July figure is up 37 from June, when there were 8,687 on the register, 4,359 in Portlaoise (2,634 men, and 1,725 women), 3,195 in Portarlington (1,929 men, and 1,266 women), and 1,133 in Rathdowney (698 men, and 435 women).