Jamaica’s unemployment rate falls to record low of 6.0% as at April 2022

July 15, 2022

The Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) reported that the unemployment rate for April 2022 was 6.0 per cent compared to 9.0 per cent for the same quarter of 2021, the lowest unemployment rate in Jamaica’s history. This was 3.0 percentage points lower than the same quarter of the previous year. The male unemployment rate decreased by 2.8 percentage points from 7.5 per cent to 4.7 per cent, while the female unemployment rate declined by 3.3 percentage points from 10.8 per cent to 7.6 per cent. The number of unemployed persons in April 2022 was 81,000, a decrease of 38,400 (32.2%) compared to April 2021. The number of unemployed males decreased by 19,600 (36.7%) to 33,800. Compared to April 2021, there was a decline of 18,800 (28.5%) in the number of unemployed females to 47,200.

Data from the survey indicated there were 1,269,300 employed persons, an increase of 63,300 (5.2%) relative to April 2021. Females accounted for just over one-half of the increase in employment (33,600 or 53.1%). The number of employed males increased by 29,700 (4.5%) to 691,600. The number of employed females increased by 33,600 (6.2%) to 577,700.

There was a larger decline in female youth unemployment rates. The report indicated that the unemployment rate for youth aged 14-24 was 15.5 per cent in April 2022, representing a decrease of 8.6 percentage points relative to April 2021. The unemployment rate for male youth declined by 6.0 percentage points to 15.1 while the decrease for females (12.0 percentage points) was twice that of males moving from 28.0 per cent to 15.9 per cent. There was also a larger decrease in the number of females outside the labour force. In April 2022, there were 746,400 persons classified as “Outside the Labour Force”, a contraction of of 22,600 (2.9%), compared to 769,000 in April 2021. There was a decrease of 8,900 males and 13,700 females in this group.

Notably the size of the labour force rose to 1,350,300 in April 2022, representing an increase of 24,900 (1.9%) compared to 1,325,400 in April 2021. The male labour force increased by 10,000 (1.4%) to 725,300 and the female labour force increased by 14,900 (2.4%) to 625,000.

The largest increase in employment by occupation group was in “Service Workers and Shop and Market Sales Workers”. There were 283,900 persons employed in the occupation group ‘Service Workers and Shop and Market Sales Workers’ in April 2022, an increase of 18,500 persons (7.0%). There were 287,400 persons employed in the occupation group ‘Professionals, Senior Officials and Technicians’, an increase of 16,200 or 6.0 per cent compared with April 2021.

The group ‘Clerks’ increased by 14,100 persons, almost entirely females (12,900 or 91.5%). The largest increase in male employment was in the occupation group ‘Craft and Related Trades Workers’ (7,500), followed by ‘Elementary Occupations’ (7,400). While females accounted for the higher upswing (15,500 or 83.8%) in the group ‘Service Workers and Shop and Market Sales Workers’ and more than one-half (9,500 or 58.6%) in the group ‘Professionals, Senior Officials and Technicians’.




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