HK's jobless rate falls to 4.4%

07:08, April 21, 2010      

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The Hong Kong government announced Tuesday that the unemployment rate fell to 4.4 percent in the January to March period while the underemployment rate rose by 0.1 percent to 2.2 percent.

The Census & Statistics Department said the 4.4 percent figure was the lowest since the fourth quarter of 2008. Falls in the unemployment rate were mainly seen in the insurance, arts, entertainment and recreation, and information and communications sectors.

Increases in the underemployment rate were mainly seen in the transportation and construction sectors.

Due to the seasonal fluctuation which resulted in a reduced number of seasonal jobs after the Chinese Lunar New Year holiday, the unemployment rate for the construction sector rose to 8 percent, and that for young people aged 15 to 19 grew to 18.2 percent.

Secretary for Labour & Welfare Matthew Cheung said while business activities in a number of sectors moderated somewhat owing to seasonal fluctuation, the fundamentals of the labor market remained robust.

He noted the latest feedback on job vacancies and the number of placements suggested more new jobs will likely be created in the corporate sector in the coming months, which should help improve the employment situation in the near term.

With fresh graduates and school leavers entering the labor market this summer, labor supply will increase, he added.

Source: Xinhua


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