A job subsidy scheme for young unemployed has closed five months early because it has run out of money.
"Community Max", launched last August, has been swamped with applications from non-profit groups wanting to employ more than 3000 young people.
But Social Development Minister Paula Bennett said Work and Income stopped accepting new applications on February 7 because the $40.3 million budget would pay for only 3230 people.
By February 12, 3049 positions with 451 organisations had been approved and 2627 places filled.
The scheme pays the full cost of employing a young person aged 16 to 24 for 30 hours a week at the minimum wage for six months. It was due to run all year.