For the first time in many years, the number of unemployment benefits is higher than in the preceding year. On 30 June there were 179 thousand unemployment benefits, up 8 thousand on 30 June 2001.
The number of welfare benefits decreased slightly, reaching 321 thousand on 31 March. The number of labour disablement benefits is decreasing less and less rapidly. Their number reached 988 thousand on 30 June, according to the latest figures by Statistics Netherlands.
Unemployment benefits up by 8 thousand
On 30 June the number of unemployment benefits had reached 179 thousand, up 8 thousand on the year before. Between June 2000-2001 the number of unemployment benefits still fell by 23 thousand.
The increase in 2002 occurred mainly during the first three months. On 30 June the number of unemployment benefits was about the same as on 31 March 2002, whereas in recent years there had usually been a decrease during the second quarter. The increase in the number of unemployment benefits occurred mainly among men. The number of unemployment benefits among women remained at the same level during this past year.
Welfare continues to decrease slowly
The number of welfare benefits decreased by 1.5 thousand during the first quarter of this year reaching 321 thousand on 31 March. Although it looked like the drop had ended by late 2001 the number of welfare benefits decreased slightly again earlier this year. Compared to March 2001 there were 10 thousand benefits less.
Growth in labour disability benefits slowing down
On 30 June 2002 there were 988 thousand labour disability benefits, 15 thousand more than the year before. In the preceding year, there had been an increase of 29 thousand. The increase of labour disability benefits has long occurred mostly among women over 35. The monthly growth rate was negative for the first time: on 30 June 2002 there were a thousand labour disability benefits less than on 31 May. The figures in the months to come will show whether the number of labour disability benefits is actually falling.
(source: Statistics Netherlands)