Quarterly Employment statistics reveal over 500 000 jobs lost in 2020

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Statistics South Africa’s Quarterly Employment report has revealed that half a million individuals lost their job in the period between December 2019 to December 2020, indicating the devastating impacts of Covid-19 on the local economy and the employment landscape. 

Employment has decreased by half a million in one year

In the official press statement, Stats SA provides insight into the number of jobs lost in the reported period.

Key findings

“Total employment decreased by 594 000 or (-5,8%) year-on-year between December 2019 and December 2020.”

According to the report, full-time employment decreased by 11 000 from September 2020 to December 2020 and can be attributed to decreases in the construction, manufacturing, business services, transport, and mining sectors.

Although there was a decrease in full-time employment, part-time positions saw an overall increase of 9.2% with 87 000 additional jobs reported between September 2020 to December 2020 with the following industries experiencing an uptake of employment; manufacturing, trade, business services, and community service.

In comparison to the dismal findings of the number of jobs lost between December 2019 to December 2020, the report however indicated that from September 2020 to December 2020, total employment has increased by 76 000 due to trade, community services, and business services. 

Wages

Stats SA has reported total earnings have decreased by R36,1-billion between December 2019 to December 2020 but there has been an uptake within the last four months of 2020. 

“Year-on-year, total gross earnings decreased by R36,1 billion or (-4,6%) between December 2019 and December 2020. Basic salary/wages paid to employees increased by R18,6 billion or (3,0%) from R631,8 billion in September 2020 to R650,4 billion in December 2020,” says Stats SA.

The basic salary and wages reportedly decreased by R22.9-billion between December 2019 and December 2020. 

“Year-on-year, basic salary/wages decreased by R22,9 billion or (-3,4%) between December 2019 and December 2020.”

The detailed report can be found here.

Read more: Stats SA reports Cape Town as metro with lowest unemployment rate
Read more: Local tech startup AURA expands globally

Featured image: Emil Kalibradov via Unsplash 

Ishani Chetty: Editor
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