The number of jobless Filipinos has increased by almost two million individuals during the first three months of 2016, based on the latest Social Weather Stations (SWS) survey results.
The nationwide survey conducted from March 30 to April 2 among 1,500 adult Filipinos found 23.9 percent or an estimated 11 million Filipinos were unemployed in the first quarter, up from 21.4 percent or about 9.1 million individuals in the previous quarter.
To further define joblessness, SWS said those who fall under this category are individuals 18 years old and above without a job and also looking for a job.
However, those jobless who are not looking for work, such as housewives and retired individuals are excluded from this category.
The SWS survey showed that the number of unemployed Filipinos is composed mainly of adults who quit their jobs with 12.8 percent or 5.9 million Filipinos from 9.6 percent or 4.1 million adults in the previous quarter; who were retrenched with 7.2 percent or 3.3 million Filipinos from 8 percent or 3.4 million Filipinos; and first-time jobseekers with 3.8 percent or 1.8 million Filipinos or 3.6 percent or 1.5 million adults.
The 7.2 percent who were retrenched consisted of 5.6 percent whose contracts were not renewed, 1 percent who were laid off, and 0.6 percent whose employers closed operations.
SWS found that 39 percent of Filipinos are optimistic that the number of job openings will increase in the next 12 months, lower than the 45 percent who expressed optimism in the previous quarter. (Ellalyn de Vera)