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Press Statement


06 November 2020

Live Register October 2020 and COVID-19 Income Support Payment Measures

  • The COVID-19 crisis has continued to have a significant impact on the labour market during October 2020
  • Unadjusted Live Register total stands at 203,172 for October 2020
  • Seasonally adjusted Live Register total for October 2020 was 211,600, down 4,400 from September 2020
  • In the last week of October 2020, 329,991 persons were in receipt of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) – the highest weekly number since the week ending 12 July, when there were 345,653 persons in receipt of the PUP
  • The number of people in receipt of the PUP rose by 34,131 for the week ending 01 November 2020 – the fourth successive week of increases
  • Of the 329,991 persons in receipt of the PUP for the week ending 01 November 2020, 49.6% were male, 70.8% were Irish and almost a quarter were in each of the 25-34-year-old (22.9%) and 35-44-year-old (21.7%) age groups

Go to release: Live Register October 2020

The Central Statistics Office (CSO) has today (06 November 2020) issued results from the Live Register in respect of October 2020. Today’s release also includes details regarding the COVID-19 income support schemes.

Catalina Gonzalez, CSO Statistician, explains the approach taken regarding the publication of today’s Live Register and COVID-19 income supports:

In the last week of October 2020, 329,991 of those employed whose income has been affected due to COVID-19 benefitted from the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) which is administered by the Department of Social Protection (DSP). The Temporary Wage Subsidy Scheme (TWSS) has been replaced by the Employment Wage Subsidy Scheme (EWSS) since the start of September 2020. Both the TWSS and EWSS schemes have been administered by the Revenue Commissioners which have provided TWSS data to the CSO for statistical purposes and dissemination to users. The CSO has not yet disseminated EWSS data, but we will continue to work with the Revenue Commissioners to make this available to users as soon as possible.

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  (see Information Note on Implications of COVID-19 on the Live Register and the Monthly Unemployment Estimates for more details).

A review of non-recipient Live Register claims is ongoing at the DSP 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 (see the Technical note published by the CSO to accompany the Live Register, August 2020 release for more information).

The CSO has decided to compile the Live Register data for October 2020 in the traditional way and provide details of COVID-19 income support payments (see StatBank LRW01-LRW12) separately. An analysis of the Live Register total broken down by recipient and non-recipient claims is available in Annex Table A3 in the Live Register release.

The CSO will continue to evaluate the available income support schemes and the results of the recipient and non-recipient analysis to determine whether any changes are required to the methodology for the Live Register to improve the usability of the series. Any changes the CSO may make to the methodology in the future will be clearly outlined to users in the statistical release and accompanying material.’

Commenting on today’s publication, Catalina Gonzalez continued:

‘The unadjusted Live Register total for October 2020 is 203,172. When seasonal effects are considered, the seasonally adjusted Live Register total for October 2020 was 211,600 which was a decrease of 4,400 from September 2020.

Outside of the traditional Live Register, in the last week of October 2020, 329,991 people were in receipt of the PUP.

As EWSS data has not been disseminated by the CSO yet, a total number of persons that were on the Live Register or who benefitted from the COVID-19 income supports (PUP or EWSS) in October 2020 is not available at this time.’

Commenting further on aggregates of the COVID-19 income supports, Catalina Gonzalez continued:

‘The CSO is working with and will continue to collaborate with both DSP and the Revenue Commissioners to meet user needs for availability of detailed aggregates for the COVID-19 income supports.

Using the online service, information has been captured on whether recipients of the PUP were a full-time student either at second-level or third-level for the current academic year. As most recipients have used this online service to either apply for a PUP or to self-certify their details to continue receiving the payment, analysis of the online information provided shows that at least 8.1% of PUP recipients have self-certified as being registered as a full-time student. For those aged 25 years and over, this could be as low as 2.2% while it is at least 25.4% for those aged under 25 years. If the PUP scheme did not exist, those persons, being in full-time education, would not be eligible to receive Unemployment Assistance or Unemployment Benefit.  

Tables providing the breakdowns of the numbers receiving the PUP each week by sex, age group, county and nationality grouping are being made available today. (See StatBank)

Looking at this data, of the 329,991 persons in receipt of the PUP for the week ending 01 November 2020, 49.6% are male, 70.8% are Irish, and almost a quarter are in each of the 25-34-year-old (22.9%) and 35-44-year-old (21.7%) age groups. It can also be noted that 753,029 people have received at least one payment since the scheme was established in March 2020, of which 55.9% are male and 47.8% are aged between 25 and 44 years of age.’


Catalina Gonzalez, Labour Market Analysis -  087-646 7535


For further details:

Information Note on Implications of COVID-19 on the Live Register and the Monthly Unemployment Estimates

List of CSO Statistical Releases Affected by COVID-19

For further information contact:

Catalina Gonzalez (+353) 21 453 5163

or email

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