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Solidarity: Employment stats disappointing

May 08 2012 16:28 Sapa

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Johannesburg - It is disappointing that the number of employed people has dropped by 75 000 despite a record increase in employment last year, trade union Solidarity said on Tuesday .

Compared with three years ago, there are around 421 000 fewer jobs, said Paul Joubert, economics researcher at the Solidarity Research Institute.

"There are still roughly 421 000 fewer jobs compared with three years ago, at the start of the recession."

The number of South Africans of working age (15-64 years) grew by approximately 500 000 every year, he said.

But the number of unemployed people rose from 23.9% to 25.2% in the last quarter.

In addition, the broad unemployment rate, which includes discouraged job seekers, rose from 35.4% to 36.6%.

"This means that four out of ten South Africans who are looking for work are unable to find suitable employment," said Joubert.

Employment numbers dropped sharply in 2009, during the recession.

Since then, employment levels had remained virtually constant, despite an upswing in economic growth.

employment  |  solidarity  |  unemployment
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