Jobless rate falls sharply to 9 pct, data signals further improvement

Jobless rate falls sharply to 9 pct, data signals further improvement

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Jobless rate falls sharply to 9 pct, data signals further improvement

New jobs in industrial sectors constituted some 19.5 percent of the total employment created in April, official data says. DAILY NEWS photo, Hasan ALTINIŞ

The unemployment rate in Turkey dropped 0.9 percentage points year-on-year to 9 percent in April, the Turkish Statistical Institute (TÜİK), the country’s official statistics agency, said yesterday.

Urban unemployment dropped 1.2 points to 10.7 percent, and rural unemployment dropped 0.5 points to 5.6 percent in the same compared period, TUİK said. The number of unemployed people decreased to 2.4 million from 2.6 million year-on-year, whereas the number of employed people increased to 24.6 million from nearly 24 million. The unemployment rate was 10.2 percent in January, 10.4 percent in February, 9.9 percent in March and 9 percent in April.

“The continuation of decreasing unemployment indicates a positive trend,” said Durmuş Dündar, an economy professor at Kültür University. Noting that Turkey’s economy has grown constantly for the last 10 quarters, he said developments in the world economy would determine whether this trend continued.

Non-agricultural unemployment fell to 11.1 percent in April from 12.5 percent in the same period last year. Non-agricultural employment increased by 694,000 to 24.6 million workers, while agricultural employment decreased by 19,000. The seasonally adjusted labor force participation rate was up 0.2 points to 49.7 percent, while the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was down 0.1 point to 9 percent. The labor force participation rate of people with higher education was 84.9 percent for males but 69.9 percent for females.

“Of those who were employed in April 2012, 24.4 percent were employed in agriculture, 19.5 percent were employed in industry, 6.6 percent were employed in construction and 49.5 percent were employed in services,” the TÜİK report said. The rate of employees without any social security declined 3.3 points to 38.8 percent year-on-year in April. The figure was increased from 82.6 percent to 82.7 percent in the agriculture sector. In non-agriculture sectors the figure decreased from 28.5 percent to 24.6 percent in the same compared period.

The decrease in unemployment will hold during the summer, said Veyis Fertekligil, the chief economist at T-Bank. “We may see a figure below 9 percent for a few more months,” he said, adding that unemployment will start to increase in autumn and winter, when it may hit 10 percent again.

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