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Hong Kong – Unemployment rate stable in August quarter

18 September 2019

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Hong Kong stood at 2.9% for the period from June to August 2019, same as that of the previous period from May to July 2019, according to figures from the Census and Statistics Department.

The number of unemployed persons (not seasonally adjusted) in the June to August 2019 period increased by 2,100 to 120,600.

At the same time, total employment decreased by around 3,600 to 3.86 million in June to August 2019. Over the same period, the labour force also decreased by around 1,500 to 3.98 million.

Secretary for Labour and Welfare, Dr Law Chi-kwong, commented, “The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady at 2.9% in June to August 2019. The underemployment rate was also unchanged at 1.0%. However, total employment was slightly lower than the level a year ago."

“Analysed by major sector, the unemployment rate of the retail, accommodation and food services sectors taken together increased further over the preceding three-month period, amid weak local consumption and plunging visitor arrivals caused by the recent social incidents,” Chi-kwong said. “The unemployment rate of the construction sector went down from the preceding three-month period, but employment of the sector continued to show a year-on-year decline due to subdued construction activities."
Looking ahead, Law said, "As economic conditions have deteriorated further lately, the local labour market will unavoidably be subject to increasing pressure in the near term. The government will monitor the labour market closely."

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