PSA: Number of Unemployed Filipinos Decreases to 1.6 Million in December 2023

Unemployment rate in the Philippines decreases during holiday season

The number of unemployed Filipinos decreased during the holiday season in 2023, the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) reported Wednesday.

National Statistician and PSA chief Claire Dennis Mapa reported that the number of unemployed persons ages 15 and above declined to 1.6 million in December 2023, down from 1.83 million in the previous month.

This means that the number of jobless individuals decreased by 617,000, lower than the 2.22 million unemployed Filipinos in the same period in 2022.

Key sectors such as wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles, administrative and support service activities, fishing and aquaculture, and financial and insurance activities experienced the highest annual decrease in employed persons.

There were 6.01 million underemployed individuals in December 2023, a slight elevation from the 5.79 million in the preceding month.

The Philippines recorded a 96.9% employment rate equivalent to 50.52 million Filipinos who have jobs in December 2023. This was a modest increase from the previous month and the same period in 2022.

Sectors with the most increase in employment include construction, agriculture and forestry, accommodation and food service activities, transportation and storage, and human health and social work activities.

The country’s employment rate is expected to be maintained or improved as the confidence of the labor force is high, according to Mapa.

Wage and salary workers hold the largest share in the percentage among employed individuals, followed by self-employed individuals without any hired employees.

The services sector dominates the labor market with a 57.3% share in the employed numbers.

The labor force participation rate on the other hand is 66.6% or 52.13 million Filipinos, slightly higher than previous months.

The PSA also reported a shrink in the country’s inflation rate, posting a slowdown of 2.8%, the lowest since October 2020.

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