SA unemployment rate decreases slightly

Picture Thinkstock

Picture Thinkstock

While Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS) results for the second quarter of 2015 indicate a decrease in the unemployment rate in the country, there has been a decrease in an economically active population.

This means that there has been a decline of the population which refers to the fraction of society who are employed or actively seeking work. Coupled with this, the survey shows that there has been an increase in the “not economically active population”, which refers to those who are not employed nor actively seeking work.

Statistician-General, Pali Lehohla, in releasing the results in Pretoria yesterday, said the unemployment rate decreased by 1.4 percentage points to 25.0% between the first and second quarters of 2015.

“The absorption rate increased from 43.2% in the first quarter to 43.5% in the second quarter of 2015, while the labour force participation rate declined to 58.1% from 58.6% over the same period,” Lehohla said.

The QLFS showed that 15.7 million are employed, 5.2 million are unemployed. The number of employed persons increased by 198 000, while unemployment declined by 305 000.

It also pointed to around 16% of the not economically active population, accounted for by the discouraged, while more than 80% were due to other reasons.

The largest annual increases were observed in the ‘construction’ (219 000), ‘agriculture’ (200 000) and ‘finance’ (153 000) industries. The ‘trade’ and ‘transport’ industries recorded decreases of 60 000 and 25 000 respectively.

“Around 16% of the ‘not economically active’ population was accounted for by discouraged work-seekers, while more than 80% were due to other reasons (i.e. student, home-maker, etc.). The results for the second quarter of 2015 reflect an increase in the not economically active population and a decrease in the economically active population,” said Lehohla.




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