Jobless rate expected to peak at 5.5%

IT’S going to get worse before it gets better for job-seekers. 

The number of people out of work is expected to peak at around 5% to 5.5% over the next six months. 

But while companies are paring their payrolls now, the good news is that they will start hiring again in the last half of the year, when the economy is expected to pick up steam. 

These latest projections from the Monetary Authority of Singapore on Thursday come after the unemployment rate hit a 15-year high of 4.8% last September. 

At 5.5%, that translates to more than 80,000 people out of work – but this is still lower than the 6% hit during the mid-80s recession. 

For the full year, the central bank said in its macroeconomic review report that it expects the unemployment rate to end up at between 4% and 5%.  

“Further job losses could be expected in the manufacturing sector, reflecting the continued slowdown in the information technology industry,” it said in its 108-page report. 

Manufacturing workers have borne the brunt of cuts over the last year. – The Straits Times/Asia News Network  

  • Another perspective from The Straits Times, a partner of Asia News Network. 

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