February unemployment rate hits 8.8%


The country’s unemployment rate climbed slightly to 8.8 percent in February from January’s 8.7 percent, with the number of those without work in the country reaching 4.18 million in the second month of the year, data from the Department of Finance (DOF) showed.


In January, the number of people without work was 3.95 million.

On the other hand, the country’s employment rate dropped slightly to 91.2 percent in February from the 91.3 percent in January. Surprisingly, the number of Filipinos with work rose to 43.15 million in February from 41.24 million in January.


“Potential employees saw that the economy had begun to stir back to recovery, although this was not enough to create jobs for the 2.1 million persons who joined the labor force,” the DOF said.


The Finance department said it is advocating localized and time-bound quarantine measures that will not affect the employment situation in the country.


“Like fiscal incentives that should be time-bound and targeted, strict quarantine measures, if and when they are called for, should be localized and time-bound while not unnecessarily hampering the transportation of goods and delivery of services so as to minimize the collateral damage on the economy and, consequently, employment,” it added.


Meanwhile, the underemployment rate, or the proportion of those employed seeking or wanting additional work, went up to 18.2 percent in February from 16 percent in January. This means there are 7.85 million underemployed Filipinos.

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