New figures from the Central Statistics Office show that the numbers signing on the Live Register fell by 2,900 in August on a seasonally adjusted basis.

This brings the total on the Live Register to 380,100 and marks the 26th monthly decline in a row.

It also means that the Register is more than 15% below the unemployment peak of almost 450,000 in August 2011. 

The standardised unemployment rate fell to 11.2% in August, down from 11.3% in July 2014 and below the euro zone average of 11.5%.

The CSO also said that in unadjusted terms, there were 398,325 people signing on the Live Register last month - an annual decrease of 36,955 or 8.5%. 

Commenting on today's figures, Investec economist Philip O'Sullivan said that the recovery in the jobs market is playing a key role in bringing down the country's unemployment rate, but the benefits have yet to be felt across all parts of the labour force.

ISME, the Irish Small and Medium Enterprises Association, warned today that calls for wage increases were having a negative and debilitating effect on job creation prospects. 

The association called on the Taoiseach to rein in the perpetrators for the sake of jobs and the economy.

It also noted that the long-term claimant figures on the Live Register continue to increase and account for 47.1% of the total, up from 45.2% a year ago.