New figures from the Central Statistics Office show that the unemployment rate fell to an 11-year low of 5.4% in March from a rate of 5.6% in February.

The CSO said the seasonally adjusted number of people who were unemployed stood at 131,300 in March, a decrease of 6,200 when compared to March last year.

Today's figures show that the unemployment rate for men was 5.4% in March, down from 5.9% the same month last year, while the the jobless rate for women was 5.5% – down from 5.7% last year.

Meanwhile, the seasonally adjusted youth unemployment rate was 13.4% last month, a decrease from 13.8% in February. 

The jobless rate has fallen from a financial crisis-peak of 16% in 2012, when the country was midway through a three-year international bailout. 

It had provisionally dropped as low as 5.1% last year but the series has since been subject to a series of quarterly revisions by the CSO.