Adult joblessness fell to 17.5 percent or an estimated 7.9 million people in December from 21.5 percent or around 10 million in September last year.
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Number of jobless Pinoys drops to 2.1 million — SWS
Helen Flores (The Philippine Star) - February 5, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The number of jobless Filipinos dropped by around 2.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2019, according to the latest survey of the Social Weather Stations (SWS).

Adult joblessness fell to 17.5 percent or an estimated 7.9 million people in December from 21.5 percent or around 10 million in September last year.

The survey was conducted last Dec. 13-16 using face-to-face interviews of 1,200 adults, 18 years old and above, nationwide.

The 17.5 percent jobless Filipinos in December consisted of 8.1 percent (an estimated 3.7 million adults) who voluntarily left their old jobs, 3.5 percent (1.6 million) first-time job seekers and 5.9 percent retrenched.

The SWS said unemployment declined in Metro Manila and in balance Luzon, but rose in the Visayas and Mindanao.

In Metro Manila, it fell from 24.5 percent in September to 15 percent in December.

It dropped from 25 percent  to 17.3 percent in balance Luzon.

Adult joblessness, however, rose to 15.7 percent from 11.8 percent in the Visayas.

In Mindanao, it went up to 20.7 percent from 19.9 percent.

Adult joblessness rose from 17.3 percent in September to 19.2 percent in December among 35- to 44-year-olds.

It dropped among 18- to 24-year-olds, from 44.9 percent to 31.8 percent.

Among 25- to 34-year-olds, it fell from 30.9 percent to 20.7 percent and among 45-year-olds and above, from 14 percent to 11.8 percent.

The December 2019 survey also showed that adult unemployment was lower in urban areas than in rural areas at 15.3 percent and 19.6 percent, respectively. This was the lowest urban joblessness rate in 15 years, the pollster said.

Adult joblessness was higher among women at 30.8 percent than men at 8.3 percent.

In September, adult joblessness was 14.6 percent among men and 31.4 percent among women.

Meanwhile, the poll showed a little over half or 53 percent of Filipino adults who are optimistic about the availability of jobs in the next 12 months against 12 percent who said otherwise, for a job optimism score of +40, classified by the SWS as “excellent.”

It also found 24 percent of Filipinos saying there will be “no change” in the number of jobs available and 11 percent saying they don’t know.

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