Unemployment remained at 1.9 pct in fourth quarter

In the fourth quarter of 2015 the general unemployment rate remained unchanged to the previous quarter at 1.9 per cent, while the unemployment rate of local residents dropped slightly by 0.1 percentage points to 2.6 per cent, according to data realised by the Statistics and Census Service (DSEC) yesterday. Total employment decreased by 1,800 quarter-to-quarter. Analysed by industry, employment in Gaming & Junket Activities (81,300) and Construction (51,100) decreased by 2,900 and 1,800 respectively, while that in Hotels, Restaurants & Similar Activities (57,300) increased by 2,500. Median monthly income of the employed was MOP15,000 (US$1,869), remaining unchanged from the previous quarter. The median monthly income of local residents also maintained the same level as the previous quarter at MOP18,000. Oct to Dec Information from DSEC also indicated that for October to December 2015 the total labour force was 400,600 while the labour force participation rate stood at 73.2 per cent. The total number of employed decreased by 300 from September to November 2015, to 393,100. Analysed by industry, employment in construction registered a decrease. The number of unemployed was 7,500, up slightly by 100 from the September to November period; fresh labour force entrants searching for their first job accounted for 10.8 per cent of the total unemployed, down 0.9 percentage points. Yearly roundup For the whole year of 2015, the general unemployment rate stood at 1.8 per cent, up 0.1 per cent year‑on‑year, according to the latest data provided by the government. Official data also shows that the median monthly employment earnings of the employed was MOP15,000 (US$1,869), an increase of 12.8 per cent compared to the previous year. In addition, the median monthly income of local residents rose 20 per cent to MOP18,000. With regard to household employment, the average number of employed persons per household was 1.8 in 2015, the same as that in 2014; median monthly employment earnings per household increased by 3.7 per cent year-on-year to MOP28,000.