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Japan – Jobless rate falls to 2.4% in December

01 February 2019

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Japan fell by 0.4% to 2.4% in December 2018 when compared to the same period last year, according to Statistics Japan.

When compared to November 2018, the unemployment rate fell by 0.1%.

The number of unemployed persons in December 2018 was 1.59 million, a decrease of 150,000 thousand or 8.6%, from the previous year.

Meanwhile, the employment rate in Japan stood at 60.0%, up 1.1% from the same period last year. The number of employed persons in December 2018 was 66.56 million, an increase of 1.14 million or 1.7% from the previous year.

The labour force participation rate was 61.4%, an increase of 0.9% compared to last year.

Japan also published its full year 2018 data showing that the average unemployment rate stood at 2.4%, down 0.4% from the previous year and the lowest figure since 1992.

The number of unemployed fell by 240,000 to 1.66 million, the ninth consecutive year of decline. The world's third-largest economy added 1.34 million jobs, bringing the number of people in work to 66.64 million, the most since comparable data became available in 1953.

An official from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications said many of those jobs were filled by elderly and women in part-time positions, with notable growth in the hotel and food service industries, and added that “labor market conditions continue to show solid improvement.”

Job availability for 2018 was the second-highest on record, with the ratio of openings to job seekers standing at 1.61, behind the 1.76 recorded in 1973.


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