Unemployment dropped across Galway again in August, with the largest improvements so far this year being found in Connemara.
There were 10,943 people on the Live Register in Galway last month, down 505 (4.2%) on last month and 536 (4.5%) since the start of the 2018.
However there is always a seasonal jump in the Live Register as many contract workers or those employed at primary schools and playschools are forced to sign on.
The most dramatic drop in unemployment seen so far this year has been in Clifden, where the number of people on the Live Register has fallen by 168, or nearly a quarter, since January.
The change was even more pronounced among young people, with the number of people under 25 years old on the register in Clifden more than halved in the first eight months of 2018.
Last month there were 677 people on the register in Clifden in August, compared with 845 at the beginning of the year.
But Clifden also saw the smallest gains in the past month, with unemployment dropping by just 1.6%.
Galway city has actually been outstripped in improving unemployment by rural areas and smaller towns.
The Live Register in the city has only shrunk by 3.3% since January, last place behind Tuam which is down 3.7%.
There are 6,044 people on the Live Register in Galway city, 268 less than the month before, but only 200 less than the beginning of the year.
Tuam had the next highest number of people on the register at 1,726, down 92 on July; in Loughrea 52 people came of the Live Register last month, leaving 1,341.
While Ballinasloe was close behind with 1,321 people in August, which is 58 less than the previous month.
And lastly, in Gort there are 875 people on the Live Register, 24 less than in July.
Since this time last year unemployment in Galway has dropped drastically, with 1,754 people coming off the Live Register since August 2017.
Unemployment among young people has dropped much faster in the past 12 months, down 35% for those under 25, while the register for those over 25 has shrunk by 12.7%
The Live Register is a monthly count of people on Jobseekers Benefits, Jobseekers Allowance, and other employment benefits at the local Department of Social Protection Office.
It is not a perfect measure of unemployment as it includes people taking low level part time work, omits those not receiving benefits.
It’s also skewed seasonally by expiring contracts for teachers when schools close for the summer.