Sat, Sep 23, 2006 - Page 12 News List

Jobless figure rose by 6,000 last month

AGENCIES , TAIPEI

The unemployment rate rose to 4.09 percent last month from 4.05 percent in July on an increase in first-time job seekers and business closures and cutbacks, the government said yesterday.

While las month's figure was a new single-month high so far this year, it represents the lowest level for August in the last six years, said the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS), the government's statistics agency.

The figure was down from 4.36 percent a year earlier, it said.

The DGBAS said 434,000 people were jobless last month, an increase of 6,000 from July.

Huang Jiann-jong (黃建中), deputy director of DGBAS' Bureau of Census, said the jobless rate will likely begin to decline from this until the end of the year.

"The rise in the number of unemployed in August was mostly due to seasonal factors, like college graduates entering the labor market, and is not a sign of a change in the market," Huang said.

Taiwan's jobless rate averaged 3.92 percent in the January-August period, down from 4.19 percent from the same period last year, the DGBAS said.

Huang said he is hopeful that the nation's full-year jobless rate will be less than 4 percent this year. The rate was 4.13 percent last year.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the jobless rate last month was 3.85 percent, down from 3.88 percent in July and 4.10 percent a year earlier, the DGBAS said.

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