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Jobless rate up slightly in February

2019/03/22 19:12:08

Taipei, March 22 (CNA) The jobless rate for February rose slightly from a month earlier due to the termination of temporary and seasonal work contracts after the end of the Lunar New Year holiday, the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said Friday.

Data compiled by the DGBAS shows that the unemployment rate for February stood at 3.72 percent, up 0.08 percentage points from a month earlier. The February figure was also up 0.02 percentage points year- on-year.

After seasonal adjustments, the February jobless rate fell 0.01 percent from a month earlier to 3.71 percent.

Pan Ning-hsin (潘寧馨), deputy director of the DGBAS census department, told the press that the decline in the seasonally adjusted figure shows that the local job market remained stable, although the pace of domestic economic growth showed signs of slowing.

In mid-February, the DGBAS cut its forecast for Taiwan's 2019 gross domestic product (GDP) growth to 2.27 percent from a 2.41 percent increase predicted in November after taking into account weakening global demand.

In February, the number of people out of the job market rose by 9,000, or 2.07 percent from a month earlier to 443,000, while the number of the employed fell 12,000, or 0.10 percent from a month earlier, to 11.47 million, the DGBAS data shows.

The labor participation rate for February stood at 59.07 percent, down 0.02 percentage points from a month earlier.

The DGBAS said the number of those who lost their jobs due to termination of seasonal and temporary job contracts rose 2,000 from a month earlier, while the number of those who quit to look for other jobs also rose 4,000.

However, the number of first-time jobseekers fell 2,000 from a month earlier in February, the DGBAS added.

Among people with a university degree, the jobless rate in February was 5.13 percent, the highest among all education groups, while the jobless rate among people holding a senior high school diploma and those with a graduate school degree stood at 3.55 percent and 2.90 percent, respectively, the DGBAS said.

The jobless rate for the first two months of this year stood at 3.68 percent, up 0.01 percentage points from a year earlier, while the labor participation rate rose 0.19 percentage points to 59.08 percent, the DGBAS added.

(By Pan Tzu-yu and Frances Huang)