While South Africa’s unemployment rate remains at 27.7% for the second quarter of 2017, the labour landscape in the country has worsened significantly.
According to the latest Quarterly Labour Force Survey from Stats SA for the second quarter of 2017, the country’s unemployment rate was stable at 27.7%, despite further job losses.
This means that there has not been an increase of work appointments, but rather a reduction of active job seekers.
The number of job seekers has declined by 37,000 people to approximately 6.3 million, reducing South Africa’s labour force participation rate to 59.9%, from 60.5% in the first quarter.
There was a net loss of 113,000 jobs between the first quarter of the year and the second quarter, with 16.1 million people formally employed – down from 6.2 million before.
The expanded unemployment rate – which includes an extra 3.1 million people who were available to work, but did not look for work during the reference period – increased by 0.2 of a percentage point to 36.6%.
This is approximately 9.3 million people aged 15-64 who wanted to work and were available to work, but their labour was not used.
According to Stats SA, the drop was driven by six of the 10 industries.
The largest decreases were recorded in construction (110,000) and agriculture (40,000).
However, employment gains were observed in trade (58,000), finance (17,000), manufacturing (10,000) and utilities (2,000).
Provincially, the largest employment losses were recorded in Gauteng (143,000) and Eastern Cape (26,000), while Limpopo and KwaZulu-Natal recorded employment gains of 32,000 and 29,000 respectively.