HR & EDUCATION | Staff Reporter, Singapore

Unemployment rate dips to 2% in March

This translates to 64,800 unemployed residents.

Singapore’s labour market remained tight as unemployment rate dipped from 2.1% in December 2017 to 2% in March which roughly translates to 64,800 unemployed residents, according to labour market statistics released by the Ministry of Manpower (MoM).

Unemployment levels for citizens remained flat at 3% in Q1 which translates to around 57,900 unemployed. On a year-on-year basis, unemployment rates were also lower.

“All in, these indicators point to a slight improvement in labour market conditions in 1Q 2018,” MoM said in its report.

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However, total employment shrank in Q1 due to a protracted contraction in Work Permit Holders in construction and marine shipyard which was partially offset by 7,900 additional workers in the services sector.

Sectors which had higher concentration of locals in its manpower such as Community, Social & Personal Services, Financial & Insurance, Information & Communications and Transportation & Storage continued to post employment increases, MoM noted.

Retrenchment levels were also lower in Q1 both on a QoQ and YoY basis as the number of retrenched dipped from 4,000 a year ago and 3,680 the previous quarter to 2,100 in Q1.

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This comes on the heels of an improving job market as local employment nearly doubled last year from 11,2000 in 2016 to 21,300 in 2017 led by hires in financial and insurance services, information & communications, professional services and healthcare sectors which have relatively higher shares of Professionals, Managers, Executives & Technicians (PMETs).

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