Unemployment in Singapore rises to 3.1% in Q2 2016
Overall unemployment rose, total employment growth slowed and layoffs increased from previous quarter
Advance statistics showed that overall unemployment rose in June 2016 from March 2016. Unemployment increased for residents and citizens, after declining in the previous quarter. Amid subdued global economic conditions, employment grew at a slower pace in the second quarter of 2016, compared with the first quarter of 2016 and a year ago. Layoffs rose from the previous quarter and a year ago. These are the key preliminary findings from the "Labour Market Advance Release Second Quarter 2016" report released by the Manpower Research and Statistics Department, Ministry of Manpower (MOM).
Singapore's Dhoby Ghaut underpass.
Unemployment rose for residents and citizens in June 2016, after declining in March 2016
Preliminary estimates showed that the seasonally adjusted overall unemployment rate rose from 1.9% in March 2016 to 2.1% in June 2016. Over the same period, unemployment rate increased among residents (2.7% to 3.0%) and citizens (2.6% to 3.1%), after declining over the previous quarter.
Amid subdued global economic conditions, total employment grew at a slower pace in second quarter 2016
Total employment grew by 5,500 in the second quarter of 2016. This was lower than the first quarter of 2016 (13,000) and the same period last year (9,700).
The employment growth in the second quarter of 2016 was mainly driven by services (8,600), though the pace slowed from the previous quarter (13,200). Manufacturing continued to see a decline in employment (-3,400), while employment in construction remained relatively unchanged (400).
In June 2016, total employment reached 3,674,700, 1.3% higher than a year ago. This was similar to the 1.4% growth in March 2016, but slower than the average growth of about 2% in 2015.
Layoffs rose from the previous quarter and a year ago
Preliminary estimates showed that the number of workers made redundant in the second quarter of 2016 (5,500) rose from the previous quarter (4,710) and a year ago (3,250). Layoffs fell over the quarter in manufacturing, while it increased in services and stayed relatively unchanged for construction.
Employment growth has slowed, and unemployment and redundancies have risen in the second quarter of 2016. This reflects the subdued economic conditions, restructuring of our economy and slowing local labour force growth. We will continue to step up our tripartite efforts to transform our industries, create more jobs of better quality, and help displaced workers to seize new job opportunities through various career and employment support programmes under SkillsFuture, and Adapt and Grow initiatives .
 Adapt and Grow was announced by Minister Lim Swee Say at the MOM Committee of Supply Debate 2016, and brings together a package of enhanced employment support initiatives, including the expansion of Professional Conversion Programme (PCP) to support those switching careers, and enhancement of the Career Support Programme (CSP) to help displaced PMETs secure a quality job with employers. More details can be found at http://www.wda.gov.sg/content/wdawebsite/programmes_and_initiatives/adapt-and-grow.html