SINGAPORE: The annual average resident unemployment rate rose slightly from 2.8 per cent in 2015 to 3 per cent in 2016, the highest since 2010, according to the finalised figures from the Manpower of Ministry (MOM) released on Wednesday (Mar 15).
According to the release on Labour Market Developments in 2016, the increase was broad-based across most age and education groups, with larger increases among those aged 30 to 39 and 50 and over, as well as those with secondary and degree qualifications.
This was similar to the findings in the ministry's advanced figures released this January.
The annual average resident long-term unemployment rate rose from 0.6 per cent in 2015 to 0.8 per cent last year, and was higher among those aged 50 and over, and among degree holders, it added.
The nominal median monthly income from work, including employer CPF contributions, of full-time employed Singaporeans increased by 0.7 per cent year-on-year to S$3,823 in June 2016, or 1.3 per cent in real terms, MOM said.
The real median income, including employer CPF contributions, of full-time employed Singaporeans rose by 16 per cent (or 3.1 per cent per annum) from 2011 to 2016, it added.
TOTAL EMPLOYMENT CONTINUES TO MODERATE
Total employment, excluding foreign domestic workers (FDWs), grew by 8,600 last year, which is lower than 2015's 23,300 and significantly lower than in the earlier part of the decade, which had an annual average of 120,000 between 2010 and 2014, the press release said.
Local employment rebounded though, growing 11,200 last year from 2015's 700, with the growth mainly in the professional services, financial and insurance services and community, social and personal services sectors.
"Growth in local employment remained lower than in the earlier part of the decade, reflecting both a structural trend due to demographics as well as cyclical weakness in parts of the economy," MOM said, adding that growth of the local working-age population is slowing due to smaller cohorts of younger locals entering the workforce and more "baby boomers" retiring.
Meanwhile, foreign employment (excluding FDWs) contracted by 2,500 in 2016, continuing a downtrend since 2011. The contraction was mainly due to the decrease in Work Permit Holders (-7,900) in the manufacturing, marine and construction sectors, the report said.
Redundancies went up to 19,170 last year, slightly more than the 19,000 projected in the advance figures. This was due mainly to business restructuring and reorganisation, which continued an upward trend since 2010 but lower than the recessionary high of 23,430 in 2009, the ministry said.
The increase in redundancies was accompanied by a decline in the annual average rate of re-entry among residents made redundant. Slightly less than half of residents, or 48 per cent, made redundant in 2016 re-entered employment, the lowest since 2010's 53 per cent.
In particular, the rate of re-entry was the lowest among those aged 50 and over (40 per cent), degree holders (42 per cent) and PMETs (44 per cent), the findings showed.