Unemployment at 5-year low
The largest increase in employment was in public administration - 8,400.
The unemployment rate for men fell to 8.5% in the first quarter, from 9% in the preceding quarter and 9.8% in the corresponding quarter of last year. The unemployment rate for women fell to 8.9% in the first quarter from 10.8% in the preceding quarter and 12.1% in the corresponding quarter of last year.
The number of unemployed was a seasonally adjusted 245,200 in the first quarter: 123,400 men and 121,800 women. The number of unemployed fell 6.7%, or 17,700 people, compared with the preceding quarter, and 13.7%, or 44,800 people, compared with 290,000 unemployed a year ago.
The Central Bureau of Statistics unemployment report includes report also includes positive employment figures for the first quarter:
- 2.45 million people had jobs in the first quarter, an increase of 1.4%, or 33,000 people, compared with the preceding quarter, and an increase of 2.8%, or 67,600 people, compared with the corresponding quarter of last year.
- Since hitting bottom in the first quarter of 2002, the number of employed people has risen by 8.9%, or 189,800 people.
- The number of full-time employees (working 35 or more hours a week), rose by 2.3%, while the number of part-time employees fell by 1.2%.
- The average number of work-hours per employee was 36.9 in the first quarter, compared with 36.5 in the preceding quarter.
Participation in the civilian labor force is continuing to rise, reaching 54.7% in the first quarter, compared with 54.6% in the preceding quarter. Participation of men reached 60.3%, the same as in the preceding quarter, while participation of women rose to 49.4% from 49.2%.
However, the largest increase in employment was in public administration, belying the government's declared policy. The number of public sector employees rose by 8,400, a jump of 7.4%.
The number of employees in the car sales and service sector rose by 7,900, an increase of 2.8%. There were smaller increases in the number of employees in industry, transportation, storage, communications and other sectors. Health, nursing and welfare services also saw a small increase in employment.
Published by Globes [online], Israel business news - www.globes.co.il - on May 25, 2005
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