Singapore’s total employment rebounds in Q4 last year

Q4 of 2021 saw total employment growing 47,400 compared to the decline of 2,400 in the third quarter, said the Ministry of Manpower (MOM).
By: | January 31, 2022

MOM’s Labour Market Advance Release also reported that resident employment grew at a faster pace, and non-resident employment increased for the first time in two years.

The increase in employment was broad-based across all industries and is partly attributed to increased hiring for year-end festivities in industries such as food & beverages and retail. Employment grew in these sectors for the first time after consecutive quarters of declines.

The resumption of entry approvals for fully vaccinated workers from early November led to a rise of 15,800 non-resident workers in the construction sector in Q4, after declining for nearly a year.

The overall unemployment rate fell to 2.4% in December, down from 2.5% the month before, but stayed above pre-pandemic levels. The full-year overall unemployment rate in 2021 dropped to 2.6% from 3.0% year-on-year, also remaining above pre-pandemic levels.

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The number of retrenched workers in 2021 fell significantly from 2020 – from 26,110 in 2020 to 7,820 in 2021. The reasons cited for retrenchment also differed. In 2021, common reasons were “reorganisation” and “restructuring”, while in 2020, “recession” or “business downturn” were cited more.