Taiwan’s jobless rate in May dips to new low in 3 years

Taipei, Taiwan's jobless rate for May fell to a new low in three years due to a continued economic recovery, which has helped the local job market improve further, according to the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS).

In May, the local unemployment rate fell 0.01 percentage points from a month earlier to 3.63 percent, the lowest level since May 2015, when it stood at 3.62 percent, data compiled by the DGBAS showed.

After seasonal adjustments, the May jobless rate remained unchanged from a month earlier at 3.69 percent, the data indicated.

It was the third consecutive month for the unemployment rate to move lower on a month-on-month basis, which provided further evidence of a recovering economy at home.

In late May, the DGBAS upgraded its forecast of Taiwan's gross domestic product (GDP) growth for 2018 by 0.18 percentage points to 2.60 percent after the local export-oriented economy made a strong showing in the first quarter as it benefited from solid global demand.

In May, the number of unemployed people fell by 1,000 or 0.20 percent from a month earlier to 430,000, while the number of employed rose 5,000 or 0.04 percent from a month earlier to 11.41 million, the DGBAS said.

Meanwhile, the labor participation rate for May reached 58.86 percent, unchanged from a month earlier, the DGBAS added.

In the first five months of this year, Taiwan's jobless rate stood at 3.65 percent, the lowest level in 18 years, while the labor participation rate rose 0.14 percentage points from a year earlier to 58.87 percent, according to the DGBAS.

Pan Ning-hsin (???), deputy director of the DGBAS' census department, told the media that since the local jobless rate after seasonal adjustments hit a recent high of 3.97 percent in May 2016, the job market has been improving with the economy growing.

In May, the number of first time job seekers fell 1,000 from April, and the number of people who lost jobs due to business closures or downsizing dropped by 1,000, while the number of people who were out of the job market due to termination of temporary or seasonal job contracts also declined by 1,000, the DGBAS said.

However, the number of people who had quit jobs and sought a new one rose by 1,000 from a month earlier in May, the DGBAS added.

In terms of age groups, the unemployment rate among people aged 15-19 was 8.26 percent in May, while in the 20-24 age group, which had a large number of first time job seekers, it hit 11.54 percent, the DGBAS said.

The jobless rate in the 25-29 age group, however, appeared stable, reaching 6.28 percent in May, the DGBAS data showed.

Among people holding a university degree, the jobless rate in May was 4.95 percent, the highest among all education groups, while the unemployment rate among people holding a senior high school degree and a graduate school degree stood at 3.55 percent and 2.86 percent, respectively, the DGBAS said.

Pan said with the graduation season arriving, which will boost the number of first time job seekers, Taiwan's jobless rate is expected to move higher during the June-August period.

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel