Hong Kong Jobless Rate Rises In June

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Hong Kong’s jobless rate rose during the April to June period to the highest level in over fifteen years, data from the Census and Statistics Department showed on Tuesday.

The jobless rate increased to 6.2 percent during April to June period from 5.9 percent during the March to May period.

The latest unemployment rate was the highest in over 15 years.

The underemployment rate rose to 3.7 percent in April-June from 3.5 percent in March-May. That was the highest in nearly 17 years.

The number of unemployed persons increased by 10,300 to 240,700 during the three months ended June from 230,400 in the preceding period.

The employment was 3.620 million in the three months ended in June, same as in the previous month.

“The labor market continued to deteriorate for the second quarter of 2020 as a whole, but the pressure faced by the labor market showed signs of easing towards the end of the quarter as the local epidemic situation abated in May and June,” the Secretary for Labor and Welfare Law Chi-kwong said.

“The launch of the Employment Support Scheme also helped counter the headwinds facing the labor market,” Law added.

“The local labor market situation going forward will depend very much on how the global and local epidemic situations evolve,” Law said.

The unemployment rate of the consumption- and tourism-related sectors – retail, accommodation and food services – combined edged up to 10.7 percent in April – June, the highest since August – October 2003 after the onslaught of SARS, but their combined underemployment rate eased somewhat, the official said.

The unemployment rate for food and beverage service activities stayed near the post-SARS high, at 14.7 percent.


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