South Korea’s April jobs show largest growth in seven years
South Korea’s jobs growth in April rose at its sharpest pace in nearly seven years, signalling that the country’s job market is recovering, backed by a rebound in domestic demand and exports.
The number of employed workers totalled 27.21 million in April, up 652,000 from a year ago, based on data from Statistics Korea. The figure also marks the largest job growth since August 2014, when 670,000 more were employed.
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell to 3.7% in April, from 3.9% in March, and is also the lowest since August 2020. Jobs were mostly added in healthcare and social services, transportation and warehouses, and construction.
Jobs in retailers were the hardest hit, with a loss of 182,000 jobs from a year earlier. However, 61,000 people were employed at accommodation facilities and restaurants, marking the first increase since the onslaught of the pandemic.
To contain the spread of COVID-19, the government has enforced a ban on gatherings over five people, and restricted most businesses to close by 10pm.
President Moon Jae-in has also pledged to boost fiscal spending further, if needed, to increase jobs.