Czech unemployment rate steady at 7.6% in Oct, in line with expectations

By bne IntelliNews November 8, 2013

The unemployment rate in the Czech Republic stayed at 7.6% for the second month running in October 2013, in line with market expectations, data from the labour ministry showed. In annual terms, however, the jobless rate was higher by 0.9pps. The indicator shows the share of jobless people aged between 15 and 64 and immediately able to start work versus all working people in the same demographic group.

Unemployment among women stayed at 7.8% for the third straight month in October and among men it stood at 7.4%, the same as a month earlier.

The number of jobseekers stood at 556,681 as of end-October, down by 377 from at end-September but by 59,919 higher from the same month of 2012. The number of available job seekers, showing how many people registered as unemployed by labour offices are able to start work shortly, in the 15-64 age group, stood at 540,419, down from 541,847 in the previous month.

Job vacancies in the tenth month of 2013 fell by 2,285 on the month and by 1,592 on the year to 39,137. Thus, there were 14.2 jobseekers per vacancy, down from 13.4 in August.

IntelliNews comment: The unemployment rate in the country of 10.5mn has been hovering around 7.5% since February when it hit a record-high of 8.1%. The end of seasonal work, mainly in the construction and agricultural sector, and the fact that employers remain wary of hiring new staff amid the still fragile economy will dampen employment in the next few months. Yet, the gradually recovering economy that exited a record-long recession in Q2 and improved investor confidence should bring an improvement to the labour market as of next year.

The Czech labour market is also suffering from falling wages. Real wages in the country dropped by 0.3% y/y in the second quarter of 2013, following a 2.2% y/y drop in the first three months.

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