2012 LABOUR FORCE - MAY
Published: Friday September 14th, 2012
PRESS RELEASE 2012 LABOR FORCE SURVEY - MAY
The Department of statistics releases the results of its Labour Force and Household Income Survey which was conducted in May of this year. The results of the survey provide information on the labour force as it existed during the reference period of April 23 – April 29, 2012.
The results of the survey which covered a six months period indicate that there was a slight increase, less that one percent, in the size of the labour force which now numbers 191,455 persons. Women were the main contributors to this increase with their numbers growing by 3.6% compared to a decline of 2.4 percent for men. This is reflected in the overall participation rate which remained basically the same. The participation rate for women increased by1.5 percentage points while that of males fell by 1 percentage point.
In both New Providence and Grand Bahama, the number of females in the total labour force and the employed labour force exceeded that of males. On the other hand, there were more unemployed males than females in both islands.
The data further show that there was a moderate increase in the number of employed persons (3,145) and a noticeable decrease in the number of unemployed persons resulting in a decline of 1.2 percentage points in the unemployment rate, which now stands at 14.7% for the country. Both New Providence and Grand Bahama experienced a decline in the unemployment rate. In the case of New Providence the rate fell from 15.1% to 14.0% and in Grand Bahama from 21.2% to 17.3%.
Further, discouraged workers in the country declined nearly 3% over the period. When examined by sex, the decline was greatest among women (24%) as opposed to men whose number increased by 28%. New Providence experienced a decline of 3% in the number of discouraged workers while the reverse was the case in Grand Bahama where the numbers increased by 12%. These persons, according to the standard definition of the International Labour Organization (ILO), adhered to by The Bahamas and most countries including those of the Caribbean, United States and Canada, are not considered unemployed as they did not meet the three criteria of unemployment namely i) seeking work, ii) willing to work, and iii) able to work.
Additionally, results from the survey suggest that persons involved in the informal sector activities continue to decline over the period. The informal sector consists of persons who are engaged in that part of an economy that is not taxed nor monitored by any form of government. These workers usually have no contract, little or no form of job security, no fixed hours, nor employment benefits such as sick or maternity pay and often no fixed location from which they operate.
The unemployment rate for youth (15-24 years) in the country now stands at 29.4%, a decline of 4.6 percentage points over the last six month.
These results will be available immediately on our website (http://statistics.bahamas.gov.bs) and the final report will be completed and disseminated by mid November 2012.