New figures from the Central Statistics Office show that the numbers on the Live Register rose sharply again this month.

The headline figure for April is 384,448, an increase of just over 13,000 from March and almost double the figure for the same month last year.

The seasonally adjusted figure rose by 15,800 to 388,600 in April, this is made up of 9,300 men and 6,600 women.

The Taoiseach had already signalled the figure in the Dáil.

He was speaking following the publication of a report by the Economic and Social Research Institute, which forecasts the loss of 300,000 jobs in Ireland before the end of next year.

Read the CSO's April Live Register report

Read the executive summary of the ESRI's report

The ESRI also expects that the rate of unemployment will average 17% in 2010.

In its most downbeat economic assessment ever, the ESRI also expects that by the end of next year living standards in Ireland will be 15% lower than in 2007.

The report says economic output will shrink by 9.2% this year.

This contraction in the economy is significantly bigger than the Government assumed in the Budget.

The report says the Government will lose an additional €1.3bn in tax receipts this year.

The ESRI says it is fearful that any further increase in income taxes will make it harder for employers to achieve wage cuts, which it says are vital to restoring the overall competitiveness of the economy.