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9.6 million Pinoys jobless in Q4 of 2022 – SWS

Janvic Mateo - The Philippine Star
9.6 million Pinoys jobless in Q4 of 2022 � SWS
Pedestrians walk as they shop at a market in Manila on January 26, 2022.
AFP / Jam Sta Rosa

MANILA, Philippines — An estimated 9.6 million Filipinos were jobless in the fourth quarter of 2022, according to a survey conducted by Social Weather Stations (SWS).

Results of the Dec. 10 to 14 survey released on Wednesday night found that the joblessness rate was at 21.3 percent of the adult labor force, estimated to be at 45.2 million.

The joblessness rate was up from the 18.6 percent and 20.8 percent obtained in similar surveys conducted in October and June, respectively, but lower than the 26 percent in April.

SWS said the country had an average 21.7 percent for 2021, four points below the 25.7 percent average for 2021 and over 15 points below the record-high 37.4 percent average for 2020.

However, it was still 1.9 points above the 19.8 percent average of 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic.

SWS’ adult joblessness rate consists of those 18 and above who voluntarily left their old jobs, those who lost their jobs due to economic circumstances beyond their control and those seeking jobs for the first time.

Historically, results of the SWS survey on joblessness are higher than the combined unemployment and underemployment rates released by the government through the Labor Force Survey conducted by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA).

The PSA on Wednesday announced that the unemployment rate slightly increased from 4.2 percent in November to 4.3 percent in December, while underemployment eased from 14.4 percent to 12.6 percent.

According to SWS, joblessness increased across all areas, except in Metro Manila where it slightly went down.

It stayed highest in Metro Manila at 25 percent (down from 26 percent), followed by those in the rest of Luzon at 23 percent (from 20 percent), Visayas at 19 percent (from 12 percent) and Mindanao at 18 percent (from 16 percent).

SWS said joblessness fell in urban areas (from 23 percent to 21 percent), while it increased among respondents in rural areas (from 15 percent to 21 percent).

By gender, joblessness increased both among men (from 12 percent to 15 percent) and women (from 28 percent to 30) percent.

In terms of educational attainment, joblessness is highest among high school and college graduates at 23 percent (from 22 percent and 16 percent, respectively), followed by elementary graduates at 20 percent (from 17 percent) and non-elementary graduates at 16 percent ( from 11 percent).

The survey had 1,200 adult respondents with a margin of error of plus or minus 2.8 percent for national percentages.

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