MANILA – More Filipinos found jobs in the fourth quarter ahead of the busy Christmas season.
The unemployment rate continued to ease in October, now at just 5.6 percent compared with last year’s 6 percent and July’s 6.5 percent.
There were 39.8 million employed in the Philippines as of October, up slightly from the July figure of 39.2 million.
Based on global standards, a person is considered employed if he worked at least an hour in the past week.
Underemployment, or the number of people who have jobs but are still looking for other work, also fell to 17.7 percent compared with the over 18 percent from a year earlier.
There were 7.02 million underemployed in October versus 8.22 million in July.
Close to 60 percent of the underemployed worked for less than 40 hours a week. Most of the underemployed worked in the services and agriculture sectors.
The labor force participation rate was estimated at 63.3 percent.
Despite the decreasing jobless figures, the World Bank has said the Philippines still has a long way to go in providing better quality jobs to Filipinos.
The government has given up on its 7-8 percent growth target this year, saying the economy would likely expand 6-6.5 percent, which would still make the Philippines one of the few bright spots in Asia. — ABS-CBNnews.com with ANC, Reuters