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Singapore – Unemployment remains low, vacancies rise

14 June 2013

Unemployment in Singapore remained low while redundancies declined during the first quarter, new figures show on Friday. According to official data by the Ministry of Manpower, more jobs became available for job seekers as vacancies rose in the quarter.

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Singapore remained low at 1.9% in March 2013, but rose from 1.8% in December 2012.

Total employment in the period grew by 28,900, substantially lower than the seasonal increase of 44,000 seen in the last quarter of 2012, but still above levels seen a year ago. Total employment in the first quarter reached 3.38 million, an annual increase of +4.0%.

The data also shows that the number of redundancies declined in the three months to March, following a rise in the preceding two quarters. 2,120 workers were made redundant in the first quarter of 2013, compared to 2,600 in the prior year.

Job openings also increased, following a decline in the previous quarter. Over the quarter, vacancies jumped by +17% in March 2013, reversing the decline of 7.0% in December 2012.

Staffing firm Randstad said the rise in job vacancies reflected the growing business confidence in Singapore with employers confident about creating new roles. It added that demand for professionals in Singapore remained high, particularly in the financial services and insurance, information technology, research and development, and the retail and hospitality sectors. 

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