The Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) issued its July 2016 Labor Force Survey (LFS) report on Friday. PSA said July’s unemployment and underemployment rate is the lowest in 11 years.

Here are three fast facts about the unemployment rate on July 2016.

1. The LFS report from PSA indicated that the employment rate has reached 94.6 percent. This is the highest rate since 2011.

PSA also reported that the labor force participation (LFPR) in July 2016 was estimated at 63.3 percent. The LFPR in 2015 is at 62.9 percent. PSA also indicated that the following regions have the lowest employment rate:

  • CALABARZON (92.4 percent)
  • National Capital Region (93.5 percent)
  • Central Luzon (93.8 percent)
  • Northern Mindanao (93.9 percent)

The highest sector with employment rate is agriculture, comprising 26.9 percent, while workers in the industry sector made up the smallest group registering 17.8 percent of the total employed. Within the industrial sector, the construction group comprised the highest percentage of workers (48.1 percent).

2. Unemployment rate is 5.4 percent in July 2016. The unemployment rate was at 6.5 percent in the same period of 2015.

“The unemployment rate in July 2016, the lowest recorded for all July rounds in the past decade, increases the likelihood of achieving the Philippine Development Plan target of 6.5-6.7 percent for 2016,” The National Economic and Development Authority (NEDA) reported Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia, as saying. Pernia said that the growing economy has added and created better jobs.

Unemployment among the youth also declined to 13.5 percent in July from 16.3 percent a year ago. Pernia said that although this is good news, there are still 4.3 million young Filipinos who are underutilized. He reasoned that education and training are not enhanced among this population.

“Government needs to strengthen its JobStart program, which provides assistance to young Filipinos in finding decent jobs,” Pernia said.

3. Vulnerable employment remains a concern. Pernia said sustainable livelihood and entrepreneurship schemes must be developed.

Pernia said the proportion of self-employed and unpaid family members is more than one third of the employed. He added that this could explain why poverty reduction is still slow. He said there is a need to link this population to market supply chains, provide wider access to capital, credit and technology.

What do you think of the record-breaking unemployment rate in July? Let us know in the comments section below.