KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) — The Statistical Institute of Jamaica (STATIN) is reporting that a record 1,216,200 people were employed as at July 2017.
Director General of the Planning Institute of Jamaica, Dr Wayne Henry, said the figure, contained in STATIN's Labour Force Survey, represents an increase of 29,200 people relative to July 2016, and is the highest ever recorded for a single month.
“This out-turn in the number of employed persons continues the trend of establishing record levels of employment observed since mid-2016. Prior to these increases, the previous record level of employment was registered in October 2008 at 1,174,500 persons,” he said.
The director general added that the overall labour force rose by 8,000 people to 1,371,300, as at July 2017.
He was speaking at the PIOJ's recent quarterly media briefing at the agency's head office in New Kingston.
Dr Henry said an examination of the employed labour force by industry groups revealed that 11 of the 16 categories recorded higher employment levels.
The largest increases, he pointed out, were in hotels and restaurants, up 11,000 people; financial intermediation, up 6,700 people; and wholesale and retail repair of motor vehicles and equipment, up 5,300 people.
Additionally, Dr Henry said female employment continues to increase steadily, with STATIN reporting that the figure rose to 538,900 in July 2017.
This is 15,000 more than the corresponding period in 2016, STATIN further reports, but 168,400 less than the figure for their male counterparts, which increased by 14,200 to 677,300.
Dr Henry also said that the total labour force reflected an increase in the working-age population, 14 years and older, by 4,400 people and a corresponding contraction of 3,600 people in the number of individuals outside the workforce.
He said STATIN's latest data indicate that the unemployment rate as at July 2017 was 11.3 per cent, representing the lowest quarterly rate in eight years.