Jobless rate falls for 5th straight month in November

Taiwan's jobless rate moved lower for the fifth consecutive month in November as business activity continues to pick up in the wake of an outbreak of domestic COVID-19 cases in mid-May being brought under control, the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said Wednesday.

Data compiled by the DGBAS showed the local unemployment rate stood at 3.66 percent in November, down 0.17 percentage points from a month earlier.

After seasonal adjustments, the country's jobless rate moved lower by 0.13 percentage points from a month earlier to 3.71 percent in November, the lowest for nearly seven months and the fifth straight monthly drop, the data indicated.

In November, the number of people unemployed fell 20,000, or 4.38 percent, from a month earlier to 436,000, according to the DGBAS.

The number employed in November was 8.24 million, down 23,000, or 0.28 percent, from a month earlier, with the labor participation rate at 59.11 percent, up 0.09 percentage points from October, the DGBAS said.

In the first 11 months of this year, the local jobless rate averaged 3.98 percent, up 0.12 percentage points from a year earlier, the DGBAS added.

Chen Hui-hsin (???), deputy director of the DGBAS census department, told reporters that the improving job market in November largely reflected growing business activity amid eased COVID-19 concerns.

As a result, the number of those who lost jobs due to business closures or downsizing fell 8,000 from a month earlier in November.

After the outbreak in locally-transmitted COVID-19 cases in mid-May, the number of those who lost jobs due to business closures and downsizing topped 200,000 at one point, but the number fell to about 155,000 in November, Chen said

However, the November figure was still about 33,000 higher than in April, Chen added.

In addition, the number of those who quit their jobs to look for another position dropped 4,000 from October in November, while the number of first time jobseekers also fell 4,000 from a month earlier, the DGBAS added.

The unemployment rate among those with a university degree stood at 5.14 percent, the highest among all education groups, according to DGBAS figures.

The jobless rate for individuals with a senior high school or junior high school education was 3.48 percent and 2.68 percent, respectively, DGBAS figures showed.

By age, the unemployment rate for individuals aged 20-24 was 12.19 percent, the majority of whom were first-time jobseekers, while the jobless rate was 8.62 percent for those aged 15-19, and 6.23 percent for the 25-29 age group, the data indicated.

Citing tallies for the past five Decembers, Chen said the local job market is expected to continue to improve this month as demand for manpower rises on the back of an increase in business opportunities over the Christmas and New Year holidays.

According to the DGBAS, the jobless rate in December has fallen between 0.04-0.08 percentage points from November over the past five years.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel