Northern Ireland

Wanting paid work

Key points

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Graph 1: Lacking but wanting work - over time

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Graph 2: Lacking but wanting work - compared to Great Britain

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Graph 3: Lacking work - over time

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Graph 4: Lacking work - compared to Great Britain

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Definitions and data sources

The first two graphs concern individuals who lack, but want, paid work.

The first graph shows how the number of people aged 16 to retirement who lack, but want, paid work has changed over time.  It is divided between the long-term unemployed, the short-term unemployed and those counted as 'economically inactive' who nevertheless want paid work.

'Unemployment' is the ILO definition, which is used for the official government unemployment numbers.  It comprises all those with no paid work in the survey week who were available to start work in the next fortnight and who either looked for work in the last month or were waiting to start a job already obtained.

The 'economically inactive who want paid work' includes people not available to start work for some time and those not actively seeking work.  The data is based on a question asking the economically inactive whether they would like paid work or not.

The second graph shows how the proportion of people aged 16 to retirement in Northern Ireland who lack, but want, paid work compares to the regions of Great Britain, with the proportions who are unemployed and economically inactive but wanting paid work shown separately.

The third and fourth graphs concern individuals who lack paid work, whether or not they want paid work.

The third graph shows how the proportion of people aged 16 to retirement in Northern Ireland who are not working compares to the regions of Great Britain, with the data shown for both the latest year and for a decade ago.

The fourth graph breaks down, for the latest year, the workless population by type of person – student, people with disabilities, single adults, couples with children and couples without children.  For comparison purposes, the equivalent data for Great Britain is also shown.

The data source for all the graphs is the Labour Force Survey (LFS).  In all bar the fourth graph, the figures for each year are the average for the four quarters of the relevant year.  In the fourth graph, the data is the average for the second and fourth quarters as family type is not recorded in the first and third quarters.

Overall adequacy of the indicator: high.  The LFS is large, a well-established, quarterly government survey designed to be representative of the population as a whole.

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