South Africa's unemployment rate held steady at 29.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2019, unchanged from the previous month's 11-year high, as the number of unemployed people dropped only by 8 thousand to 6.7 million. Employment increased by 45 thousand to 16.42 million from 16.38 million in the prior period, likely influenced by the festive season. Total employment went up in six of the 10 industries, with the largest increases recorded in community and social services (113 thousand), followed by finance (76 thousand) and transport (36 thousand). Declines were recorded in the trade (-159 thousand), manufacturing (-39 thousand) and utilities (-14 thousand) sectors, as a result of severe power cuts. The expanded definition of unemployment, including people who have stopped looking for a work, was 38.7 percent, up slightly from 38.5 percent in the previous quarter. Also, the youth unemployment rate dropped to 58.1 percent from 58.2 percent in the previous period.

Unemployment Rate in South Africa averaged 25.79 percent from 2000 until 2019, reaching an all time high of 30.40 percent in the third quarter of 2002 and a record low of 21.50 percent in the fourth quarter of 2008. This page provides - South Africa Unemployment Rate - actual values, historical data, forecast, chart, statistics, economic calendar and news. South Africa Unemployment Rate - data, historical chart, forecasts and calendar of releases - was last updated on April of 2020. source: Statistics South Africa

Unemployment Rate in South Africa is expected to be 31.70 percent by the end of this quarter, according to Trading Economics global macro models and analysts expectations. Looking forward, we estimate Unemployment Rate in South Africa to stand at 33.50 in 12 months time. In the long-term, the South Africa Unemployment Rate is projected to trend around 32.80 percent in 2021 and 32.60 percent in 2022, according to our econometric models.

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South Africa Unemployment Rate

Actual Previous Highest Lowest Dates Unit Frequency
29.10 29.10 30.40 21.50 2000 - 2019 percent Quarterly
SA


Calendar GMT Actual Previous Consensus TEForecast
2019-05-14 09:30 AM Q1 27.6% 27.1% 27.60%
2019-07-30 09:30 AM Q2 29% 27.6% 27.80%
2019-10-29 09:30 AM Q3 29.1% 29% 29.1% 29.4%
2020-02-11 09:30 AM Q4 29.1% 29.1% 28.5%
2020-05-12 09:30 AM Q1 29.1% 31.7%
2020-07-30 09:30 AM Q2 32.6%
2020-10-29 09:30 AM Q3 33.5%


News Stream
South Africa Jobless Rate Steady at 11-Year High
South Africa's unemployment rate held steady at 29.1 percent in the fourth quarter of 2019, unchanged from the previous month's 11-year high, as the number of unemployed people dropped only by 8 thousand to 6.7 million. Employment increased by 45 thousand to 16.42 million from 16.38 million in the prior period, likely influenced by the festive season. Total employment went up in six of the 10 industries, with the largest increases recorded in community and social services (113 thousand), followed by finance (76 thousand) and transport (36 thousand). Declines were recorded in the trade (-159 thousand), manufacturing (-39 thousand) and utilities (-14 thousand) sectors, as a result of severe power cuts. The expanded definition of unemployment, including people who have stopped looking for a work, was 38.7 percent, up slightly from 38.5 percent in the previous quarter. Also, the youth unemployment rate dropped to 58.1 percent from 58.2 percent in the previous period.
2020-02-11
South Africa Jobless Rate at Over 11-Year High
The unemployment rate in South Africa edged up to 29.1 percent in the Q3 2019, its highest level since comparable data began in Q1 2008, matching market expectations. The number of unemployed rose by 78 thousand to 6.73 million while employment increased by 62 thousand to 16.38 million. A year earlier, the jobless rate was lower at 27.5 percent.
2019-10-29
South Africa Jobless Rate Highest since 2003
The unemployment rate in South Africa increased to 29 percent in the second quarter of 2019 from 27.6 in the previous period. It was the highest jobless rate since the first quarter of 2003, as the number of unemployed rose by 455 thousand to 6.65 million and employment rose by 21 thousand to 16.31 million. A year earlier, the jobless rate was lower at 27.2 percent.
2019-07-30
South Africa Jobless Rate at 1-1/2-Year High of 27.6%
The unemployment rate in South Africa rose to 27.6 percent in the first quarter of 2019 from 27.1 percent in the previous period. It is the highest jobless rate since Q3 2017, as the number of unemployed went up by 62 thousand to 6.20 million and employment fell by 237 thousand to 16.29 million. The unemployment rate usually rises in the first quarter of the year, as temporary staff hired to work over the busy festive season is dismissed. However, a year earlier, the jobless rate was lower at 26.7 percent.
2019-05-14

South Africa Unemployment Rate
In South Africa, the unemployment rate measures the number of people actively looking for a job as a percentage of the labour force.