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Number of PUP recipients falls below 110,000 for the first time this year

A total of 106,245 people received the payment this week.

Image: Shutterstock/Syda Productions

THE NUMBER OF people receiving the Pandemic Unemployment Payment (PUP) has fallen by just over 4,500 since last week. 

A total of 106,245 people received the payment this week, with the greatest reduction seen in the Accommodation and Food Services sector.

Cuts of €50 to the three PUP rates came into effect earlier this month, seeing the rates fall to €300, €250 and €203 respectively.

From late October, anyone on the €203 rate, the standard jobseeker’s rate, will be moved to the jobseekers’ payment and will have to demonstrate that they were seeking work or doing training.

Two further PUP rate reductions are slated for 16 November and 8 February ahead of the scheme’s expected closure at the end of February 2022.

“Today’s figures mean that the number of people in receipt of the Pandemic Unemployment Payment has now fallen for 33 consecutive weeks,” Minister for Social Protection Heather Humphreys said. 

“And since February of this year, the number of young people under the age of 25 who were claiming the PUP has reduced by over 90 per cent,” Humphreys said. 

“We now have nearly half a million fewer people claiming the PUP compared to the peak of the virus last year – demonstrating the huge progress that has been made in terms of rolling out our vaccination programme, re-opening the economy and getting people back to work,” she said. 

The PUP figures published this week are in addition to the 179,761 people who were on the Live Register at the end of August.

At its peak in May of last year, the payment sustained as many as 605,000 people across numerous sectors of the economy. 

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