Jobless Rate Lowest Since Last December

The jobless rate surprisingly fell to 1.8 per cent in September – the lowest level since last December – as layoffs subsided in the third quarter, preliminary official figures showed. Employment growth remained strong, driven mainly by the services and construction sectors, despite slowing from the previous quarter.

The Ministry of Manpower (MOM), which released the tentative labour figures in its Employment Situation Third Quarter 2013 report, said the seasonally adjusted jobless rate for residents (citizens and permanent residents) dipped to 2.6 per cent in September from 2.9 per cent in June. The unemployment rate for Singapore citizens slipped from 3.1 per cent to 2.8 per cent between June and September.