Malaysia’s unemployment rate rose 0.1pct in Nov

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KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s unemployment rate rose marginally by 0.1 percentage points from October to 4.8 per cent in Nov 2020, with 764,400 individuals being unemployed, the Statistics Department revealed today.

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Chief statistician Datuk Seri Dr Mohd Uzir Mahidin said this was due to the Conditional Movement Control Order (CMCO) implemented to curb the drastic spike of Covid-19 cases.

“The implementation of the CMCO started with Kuala Lumpur, Putrajaya and Selangor on Oct 14, 2020 and was subsequently expanded to all states except Perlis, Pahang and Kelantan.

“During the CMCO, inter-state travel was not allowed, while economic activities continued to operate with adherence to strict standard operating procedures.

“Hence, in Nov 2020, the employment rate saw a small decrease, whereas the unemployment rate was slightly higher as compared with the previous month. Among others, this may be due to job losses and cancellation or freezing of new hires,” he said in a statement.

The number of unemployed persons in November rose by 2.2 per cent compared to the 748,200 persons in October.

Uzir said the number of employed persons dropped to 15.2 million from 15.21 million in the previous month after recording an upward trend for five consecutive months.

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The employment-to-population ratio during the month, which indicates the ability of an economy to create employment, shrank by 0.2 percentage points to 65.1 per cent in Nov 2020.

“Meanwhile, there were 142,000 employed persons who were temporarily not working in November as compared to 183,600 persons recorded in the previous month.

“This group of persons was not categorised as unemployed as they had work to return to,” said Uzir.

He said labour market conditions in November could also be portrayed by the Loss of Employment statistics reported by the Social Security Organisation, which recorded 9,086 job losses as compared to 7,416 job losses registered in Oct 2020.

“In addition, the Employment Insurance System through MYFuture Jobs reported a higher number of jobseekers in November with 185,236 persons against 68,555 job vacancies.

“Looking at the latest short-term economic indicators, the Industrial Production Index for November dropped 2.7 per cent month-on-month.

“Furthermore, both import and export values edged down by 1.9 per cent and 7.3 per cent month-on-month respectively, after registering positive growth in the previous month.”

Uzir added that with the continuous uncertainty of the economic and health situation worldwide as well as in the country, it is foreseen that a softer labour demand may have continued in Dec 2020.- NST

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