SA’s official unemployment rate drops

As lockdown discourages job seekers.
Image: Shutterstock

South Africa’s official unemployment rate fell in the second quarter as a coronavirus lockdown saw fewer people actively looking for employment, but the expanded jobless figure which includes people who have stopped looking for work soared, the statistics agency said on Tuesday.

In its quarterly labour force survey, which was conducted by phone for the first time because of the pandemic, Statistics South Africa said the unemployment rate dropped to 23.3% in the three months to end June, from a record high of 30.1% in the first quarter.

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Under the expanded definition of unemployment, the rate rose to 42% compared with 39.7% in the previous quarter.

“It is because for someone to be unemployed they have to be actively looking for employment … During ‘Stage 5’ and ‘Stage 4’ (of the lockdown) many did not continue looking for employment so they can not be classified as unemployed,” Statistician General Risenga Maluleke said of the lower official unemployment rate.

He added: “What has happened is that the share of employed has declined from 16.4 million people to 14.1 million people.”

South Africa imposed a strict coronavirus lockdown at the end of March, squeezing businesses and consumers, and saw economic output record its largest contraction ever in the second quarter.

The statistics agency said the number of people that were not economically active increased by 5.3 million people to 20.5 million between March and June, the strictest period of the lockdown.

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Distorted and inaccurate headline-creates an incorrect impression.
Expanded definition is 42% and 2,2 million less jobs.

Correct headline:
COLOSSAL INCREASE IN PEOPLE OUT OF WORK

Interesting statistic.
So if S.A. wishes to reduce the unemployment rate further, all it simply has to do is ensure that many more companies close down throwing employees out on the streets?
The more jobs lost, the lower the unemployment rate! And no, its not an April fools joke.
This could only happen in S.A.

Someone who is not actively looking for a job because there are no jobs is considered to be employed. Shame on you ANC and Statssa.

End of comments.

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