Number of jobless Filipinos slightly up in January

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The country's unemployment rate posted a slight uptick in January. Nearly two-thirds of jobless Filipinos are males, the Philippine Statistics Authority says.

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, March 5) — The number of jobless Filipinos has barely changed since January, the Philippine Statistics Authority reported on Thursday.

The government reported an unemployment rate of 5.3 percent, steady from the rate logged in January 2019. This translates to 2.39 million Filipinos without jobs, higher than the 2.28 million who said they were not working the previous year.

Nearly two-thirds of those unemployed were males, the PSA said. By age, 42.4 percent of those without jobs are aged 15-24, while those between 25-34 comprised a third of the total.

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On the other hand, the PSA found that 94.7 percent of Filipinos in the workforce were employed as of January. This translates to 42.65 million, about 1.6 million higher than last year's tally.

The Cordillera Administrative Region tallied the highest employment rate at 97.2 percent, followed by Northern Mindanao (96.8 percent), SOCCSKSARGEN (96.7 percent), Zamboanga Peninsula (96.5 percent), Central Visayas (96.5 percent), and Mimaropa (96.4 percent).

The lowest employment rates were tallied in Ilocos Region, Central Visayas, and Calabarzon, the PSA said.

By industry, those working under the services sector accounted for 58.6 percent, led by those in wholesale and retail trade and the repair of vehicles and motorcycles. Agriculture workers accounted for a fifth, while industrial laborers took up 18.8 percent.

Those with work said they rendered 40 hours or more in a week, averaging 41.3 hours. Some 31.6 percent said they worked for shorter periods weekly.

Meanwhile, some 14.8 percent of Filipinos said they were unemployed, or those who are working but want additional jobs or longer hours of work. This translates to 6.3 million people, little changed from the previous year.