By Bernadette Therese M. Gadon, Researcher
THE Philippine unemployment rate held steady in June amid an improvement in job quality.
Preliminary estimates of the Philippine Statistics Authority’s (PSA) latest Labor Force Survey put the unemployment rate — or the share of the jobless Filipinos to the total labor force — at 6% in June, unchanged from May, as the total Filipino workforce expanded by 570,000 month on month to 49.581 million.
Year on year, the unemployment rate was an improvement from the 7.7% in June 2021.
PSA data showed around the total number of unemployed Filipinos reached 2.990 million in June, 62,000 more than the 2.927 million in May. Meanwhile, the ranks of unemployed declined by 781,000 from 3.770 million a year ago.
Labor force participation rate (LFPR) — the share of the Filipino workforce to the total working age population of 15 years old and over — went up to 64.8% in June from 64% in May. However, it was lower than 65.1% in June last year.
Still, the June LFPR was the highest in three months, or since the 65.4% in March.
Meanwhile, the job quality improved as the ranks of underemployed fell 780,000 month on month to 5.888 million in June. The number was also lower by 522,000 from 6.410 underemployed Filipinos in June 2021.
This put the underemployment rate — the share of employed persons who expressed desire to work for more hours, an additional job, or have a new job with longer working hours to the total employed population — at 12.6% in June. This was better than the 14.2% in the same month in 2021, and the 14.5% in May.
This was the lowest underemployment rate in 13 months, or since the 12.3% in May last year.
The number of employed people increased by 508,000 to 46.592 million in June from 46.084 million the previous month. It was also higher by 1.516 million from 45.076 million in June last year.
This was equivalent to a 94% employment rate — the proportion of the Filipinos with jobs to the total workforce —…
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