After adjustment for seasonal effects, 273 thousand people in the Netherlands were claiming unemployment benefit at the end of September 2003. This is 20 thousand more than at the end of the previous quarter. The rate of increase in the number of people receiving this benefit was noticeably higher in 2003 than in 2002. The number of people on income support rose by 2 thousand in the second quarter of 2003, to 327 thousand at the end of June.
Faster increase in 2003
In the first three quarters of 2003 the number of people claiming unemployment benefit rose by an average 8 thousand a month after correction for seasonal effects. This rate of increase is much higher than in the year before. In 2002 the number of unemployment benefits rose by an average 3 thousand a month after seasonal adjustment. The difference in the rate of increase between men and women was smaller in the third quarter of 2003 than in the first half of this year.
Slightly more people on income support
At the end of June 2003, 327 thousand people in the Netherlands were claiming income support, 2 thousand more than at the end of the first quarter. In the first quarter income support rose by 5 thousand claimants. The number of people claiming income support rose by an average 1 thousand a month from October 2002.
The number of people claiming unemployment benefit has been increasing since January 2002. Economic recession is always reflected earlier in the number of unemployment benefits than in the number of income support benefits, as people who lose their jobs usually receive unemployment benefit for at least six months.
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