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South Africa's unemployment rate ebbs slightly to 24.1%

by , 11 February 2014

Earlier today, Stats SA released its quarterly labour force survey. It showed the number out of work dropped slightly from the previous quarter. And it was at its best level in nearly two years. Adcorp released its employment index yesterday. This reflected the poor state of affairs in the South African job market. Let's take a closer look at unemployment in South Africa…

Today, Stats SA showed that in the final quarter of 2013, 4.83 million people in SA were “without work,” reports IOL. That’s down from the 4.88 million reported in the third quarter of last year.

In percentage terms, the number out of work for the last three months of 2013 was 24.1%, says Fin24. That’s down “from a revised 24.5% in the third quarter”.

The percentage of people out of work and no longer seeking employment was 34.0%, adds IOL.

Taking a closer look at the figures, the number of new jobs grew “by 141,000” from the quarter before, reports MoneyWeb. Adding jobs were “123,000 … in the informal sector and 64,000 … in the formal sector”. But a drop of 27,000 jobs in agriculture and 20,000 in “private household industries” offset this.

The number losing their jobs is at a decade high

And a survey out yesterday from Adcorp revealed that “South Africa’s weak economy continued to shed jobs” in January, reports BDLive. Last month, the level of retrenchments hit a “10 year high”.

Adcorp’s Employment Index also revealed “the economy shed 36,290 jobs last month,” adds BDLive. This was mostly in “manufacturing and construction”.

With fears that SA’s “economy is going to underperform this year,” this isn’t going to make the task of job creation any easier, notes iAfrica.

So despite a very slight fall in the number out of work, the picture looks pretty grim for strong job creation.

South Africa's unemployment rate ebbs slightly to 24.1%
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