Underemployment increases in March-May

The number of underemployed in the Macau SAR grew by 1,100 in March-May 202 from the previous three-month period to 12,700, with the majority employed in the Gaming & Junket Activities and the Construction sector, data published by the Statistics and Census Bureau (DSEC).

Overall, both the general unemployment rate (3.4 per cent) and the unemployment rate of local residents (4.4 per cent) decreased by 0.1 percentage points from the previous February-April 2022 period, but the underemployment rate increased by 0.4 percentage points to 3.4 per cent.

The impact of the pandemic on the SAR’s economy has generated the highest unemployment rates since the international financial crisis of 2008-2009.

The SAR’s overall unemployment rate stood at 3.5 per cent in 2009 after which it gradually decreased to as low as 1.7 per cent in 2014 and then varied slightly until the economic impact of the pandemic led to an increase at the beginning of 2020.

Total employment as of March-May was 364,800 and the number of employed residents totalled 275,900, down by 5,600 and 2,900 respectively from the previous period.

Analysed by industry, employment in Hotels, Restaurants & Similar Activities decreased while that in Gaming & Junket Activities increased.

The Number of unemployed decreased by 500 from the previous period to 12,800 and among those unemployed searching for a new job, most were previously engaged in Gaming & Junket Activities and in the Construction sector.

In comparison with March-May 2021, the unemployment rate rose by 0.4 percentage points, while the underemployment rate and the labour force participation rate dropped by 0.8 and 0.6 percentage points respectively.

The DSEcv survey excludes Macau residents and non-resident workers who work in the SAR but live outside the city.

According to the preliminary estimates from the movement records, an average of about 88,500 Macau residents and non-resident workers worked in the SAR but lived outside the city during the reference period.

If including these individuals, the total labour force reached 466,100, a decrease of 5,300 from the previous period.