The unemployment rate decelerated to 3.83 percent last month, falling by 0.16 percentage points from 3.99 percent in August, as more first-time jobseekers found positions and fewer people lost work due to business closures or downsizing, the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said yesterday.
The reading after seasonal adjustments stood at 3.78 percent, down 0.05 percentage points from one month earlier, affirming an easing in finding jobs, the agency’s monthly report showed.
“The data suggest that the market is improving, although the negative effects of the COVID-19 pandemic lingers,” DGBAS Deputy Director Chen Hui-hsin (陳惠欣) said, adding that the workforce is fewer by 30,000 people compared with the pre-pandemic level.
Photo: Ann Wang, Reuters
The improvement came in line with seasonality at this time of the year, when most college graduates have landed jobs and summer part-timers have gone back to school, Chen said.
The jobless population might further shrink this month and toward the end of the year, supported by the seasonality effect, she said.
The fourth quarter is the high season for manufacturing and service sectors, which might expand their headcount to meet growing business demand, Chen said.
However, spiking virus infections around the world continue to pose a threat and it is difficult to predict how the public health crisis would pan out, she said.
The unemployed population dropped by 20,000 from August to 458,000 last month, as people who lost jobs due to business downsizing or closures decreased by 8,000, the DGBAS said.
The number of people who quit fell by 5,000, as did the number of first-time jobseekers, it said.
The unemployed period stretched by seven more days to 22.2 weeks, as it took first-time jobseekers 19.8 weeks to land positions and others spent 23 weeks finding work, the DGBAS said.
The number of people who are unemployed for more than a year increased by 1,000 to 53,000, it said.
A breakdown by education showed that university graduates had the highest unemployment rate at 5.62 percent, followed by high-school graduates at 3.44 percent and graduate degree holders at 3.15 percent, the agency’s report showed.
People aged 20 to 24 had the highest unemployment rate at 12.38 percent, followed by those aged 15 to 19 at 8.15 percent; 25 to 29 at 6.36 percent; and 30 to 34 at 3.71 percent, the report showed.
Taiwan’s unemployment rate was higher than South Korea’s 3.6 percent and Japan’s 3 percent, but lower than Hong Kong’s 6.7 percent, it said.
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