Job Vacancies Up, Unemployment Low: MOM

15 Jun 2013


Immigration News

Job vacancies in Singapore rose in the first quarter of this year while unemployment remained low, revealed a report released by the Ministry of Manpower on Friday.

Singapore’s seasonally adjusted overall unemployment rate stayed low at 1.9 per cent in March, compared to the 1.8 per cent registered in December 2012.

The unemployment rate for Singapore residents rose to 2.9 per cent from 2.7 per cent while the citizen unemployment rate remained unchanged at 2.9 per cent.

Long-term unemployment also improved slightly over the year; 13,700 unemployed residents making up 0.6 per cent of the resident labour force in March 2013 had been looking for work for at least 25 weeks, down from 14,000, or 0.7 per cent, a year ago.

Total employment grew by 28,900 in the first quarter of 2013, substantially lower than the seasonal high increase of 44,000 in the last quarter of 2012 but slightly above the 27,200 in the first quarter of 2012.

This brought total employment to 3,386,500 in March 2013, which was a 4.0 per cent increase on-year.

The number of workers made redundant in the first quarter of 2013 stood at 2,120, marking a decrease from the 3,350 workers affected in the preceding quarter and the 2,600 in the first quarter of 2012.

Job openings also rose after declining in the previous quarter, with seasonally adjusted vacancies increasing over the quarter by 17 per cent in March 2013, reversing the decline of 7.0 per cent in December 2012.

The seasonally adjusted ratio of job vacancies to unemployed persons rose from 1.05 in December 2012 to 1.21 in March with the increase in job vacancies.

Ian Grundy, head of marketing and communications at Adecco, commented: "Job seekers clearly have more choices now but they can't get complacent. The best jobs, the good jobs are always going to go quickly and job seekers, even though they have more choices, have still got to negotiate sensibly and seize the right jobs when they come around quickly."

Recruiter Randstad said the rise in job vacancies reflected the strong business confidence in Singapore.

It shows employers are focused on growth and are proving to have the strength in their balance sheets to replace or create new roles as needed, it said.

Randstad added that unemployment remained low as demand for professional talent in Singapore remains buoyant, despite broader economic uncertainty.

With the continued tight labour market, demand for experienced and skilled staff is being felt within the financial services and insurance, information technology, research and development, and the retail and hospitality sectors, it said.

However the HR firm said that "even with the declining layoffs in the past quarter, it remains crucial that jobseekers and current employees do not get complacent and continue to update their skills and qualifications.

"This will not only add value to their workplace, but will also ensure that they remain relevant in today's tight labour market."

Source: http://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/business/job-vacancies-up/709978.html


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