Survey rates joblessness at 26.1% as of June

/ 05:02 AM October 08, 2013

MANILA, Philippines—Just over one in every four adult Filipinos is jobless, according to the latest survey by the Social Weather Stations (SWS).

The Second Quarter Social Weather Survey, first published in BusinessWorld, found adult joblessness was at 26.1 percent, or an estimated 11.2 million unemployed Filipinos, as of June.


This is almost a percentage point higher than the 25.4 percent (estimated 11.1 million) jobless figure in March, which means that an additional 100,000 Filipinos joined the ranks of the unemployed in the second quarter of the year. In May last year, 26.6 percent or an estimated 10.9 million individuals were jobless, SWS data showed.

The latest rating, however, is well below the record high of 34.4 percent posted in March 2012. Adult joblessness has mostly remained over 20 percent since May 2005, SWS data showed. It was under 15 percent from 1993 to March 2004, and was within 16.5 percent to 19 percent from August 2004 to March 2005.


The SWS definition of unemployment covers respondents aged 18 and over who are without a job at present and are looking for a job. This excludes those not looking for work such as housewives, students and retired or disabled persons.

Different definition

This definition is different from the official definition in the Labor Force Survey (LFS), which includes persons 15 years and over and who are reported not working, looking for work and available for work.

The government’s latest LFS puts the official unemployment rate at 7.3 percent (estimated 3 million Filipinos) as of July this year.

The SWS survey also found that more Filipinos were optimistic about job availability in the next 12 months, with 33 percent saying that more jobs would be available, against 18 percent who said there would be fewer jobs, for a net optimism score of plus 15. Meanwhile, 30 percent said there would be “no change” and 20 percent said they did not know.


Higher among women


Between the sexes, joblessness was higher among women (35.8 percent) compared to men (19.2 percent).

Across age groups, joblessness was at 52 percent among those 18-24 years old; 35 percent in the 25-34 age bracket; 22 percent in the 35-44 age bracket; and 16 percent among those 45 years old and older.

The nationwide unemployment rate includes those who were retrenched (9 percent), those who resigned (12.3 percent) and first-time job seekers (4.8 percent).

Those who were retrenched include those whose contracts were not renewed (6.5 percent) those whose employers closed shop (1.6 percent) and those who were laid off (0.9 percent).

The survey, conducted from June 28 to 30, used 1,200 face-to-face interviews and had a margin of error of plus-or-minus 3 percentage points.—Inquirer Research

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