Hong Kong Unemployment Rate Down to 3.4% in May

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate edged down to 3.4 percent in the three-months-to-May, from 3.5 percent at the end of April, as labour demand stayed firm and total employment inched up. The underemployment rate remained unchanged at 1.6 percent in the two periods.

Comparing March - May of 2013 with February - April, decreases in the unemployment rate (not seasonally adjusted) were mainly observed in the transportation and arts, entertainment and recreation sectors. As to the underemployment rate, an increase was mainly observed in the foundation and superstructure works of the construction sector, while a decrease was mainly seen in the education sector.

Total employment increased by around 17200 from 3718300 in February - April 2013 to 3735500 in March - May 2013. Over the same period, the labour force also increased by around 18000 from 3851700 to 3869700.

The number of unemployed persons (not seasonally adjusted) increased by around 700 from 133500 in February - April 2013 to 134200 in March - May 2013. Over the same period, the number of underemployed persons also increased by around 1400 from 61800 to 63200.

Commenting on the latest unemployment figures, the Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Mr Matthew Cheung Kin-chung, said, "The labour supply will continue to be boosted by the entry of fresh graduates and school leavers, and by some job-seekers induced by the recent increase in the statutory minimum wage rate. However, the resilience of domestic demand should to some extent cushion the pressure on unemployment rate stemming from the increasing labour supply. We will continue to closely monitor the potential impact of external uncertainties on the local economy and labour market. The Labour Department will also keep up its efforts in providing comprehensive employment service to job-seekers."

Hong Kong Unemployment Rate Down to 3.4% in May

Census and Statistics Department | Joana Taborda | joana.taborda@tradingeconomics.com
6/18/2013 10:18:57 AM