South Korea added more than 900,000 jobs last month against a year-ago period in the best report in 22 years for May, but the feat may not be lasting as the bulk went to seniors for temporary work.
According to data released from Statistics Korea on Wednesday, the number of employed was tallied at 28,485,000 in May, 935,000 larger from a year-ago period. The addition is strongest for May in 22 years.
Payroll has stayed strong this year - up 1,135,000 in January, 1,037,000 in February, 831,000 in March and 865,000 in April – and staying positive for 15 consecutive months.
All age groups added jobs, but nearly half of 459,000 went to those in their 60s. Individuals aged 50s followed with 239,000 new jobs, 20s 185,000, 40s 36,000 and 30s 6,000.
Healthcare and social welfare service sector gained 178,000 jobs in May, and public administrative service 99,000 to suggest the job additions were largely government-led.
Manufacturing sector jobs grew by 107,000, construction sector 72,000, transportation and warehousing 120,000, and information and telecommunications 93,000.
Employment in accommodation and restaurant sector rebounded 34,000, ending the losing streak of a loss of 20,000 in March and 27,000 in April thanks to increased face-to-face consumption amid a return to normal lives.
Still, wholesale/retail sector shed 45,000 jobs, and financial and insurance sector 39,000 due to growing automation, unmanned stores and outlets, and kiosks.
The number of regular workers increased 900,000 and that of temporary workers 79,000. Day jobs declined 91,000.
Both the number of self-employed with paid hires and without grew 65,000 and 45,000, respectively.
Those who work for 36 hours or longer per week expanded 1,102,000, while short-hour workers who work less than 36 hours fell 139,000.
Employment rate for aged 15 or older hit 63 percent, up 1.8 percentage points to record highest for the month of May.
Unemployed count came to 889,000, down 259,000 on year. Jobless rate lost 1 percentage point to 3 percent, the lowest for May since 2013.
The number of economically inactive population reached 15,871,000, down 480,000 from a year ago. Those who gave up job search fell 188,000 to 424,000.
By Lee Ha-yeon
[ⓒ Pulse by Maeil Business Newspaper & mk.co.kr, All rights reserved]