Highlights of the July 2021 Labor Force Survey
a. Unemployment rate in July 2021 was estimated at 6.9 percent and it is the lowest since the pandemic in April 2020. In terms of magnitude, there were
b. The country’s employment rate in July 2021 was placed at 93.1 percent. This is the highest employment rate since the pandemic in April 2020. The employment rate in July 2020 was reported at 90.0 percent. (Table A)
In terms of magnitude, employed persons were estimated at 41.7 million in July 2021 or 3.4 million lower than the estimate in June 2021 (45.1 million), and
c. Labor force participation rate (LFPR) in July 2021 fell to 59.8 percent which is equivalent to 44.7 million Filipinos who were either employed or unemployed. The July 2021 LFPR is the lowest reported rate this year, from 60.5 percent in January 2021 and 63.2 percent in April 2021. The July 2021 LFPR is also lower than the 61.9 percent in July 2020. (Table A)
d. Underemployed persons were estimated at 8.7 million in July 2021 or 20.9 percent of the 41.7 million employed individuals during the period. This is the highest underemployment rate since the pandemic in April 2020.
Visibly underemployed or those working less than 40 hours in a week but still expressed the desire to have additional hours of work in their present job or to have additional job, or to have a new job with longer working hours was estimated at 4.5 million or 10.8 percent of the total employed persons.
On the other hand, invisibly underemployed or those working at least 40 hours in a week but still expressed the desire to have additional hours of work in their present job or to have additional job, or to have a new job with longer working hours was estimated at 4.2 million or 10.0 percent of the total employed persons. (Table A)
e. The average weekly hours worked by an employed person in July 2021 was 41.8 hours in a week. This is the highest mean hours worked in a week by employed persons this year. In July 2020, the average hours worked of employed person in a week was 38.2 hours. (Table A)
f. By broad industry group, the services sector continued to account for the largest share of employed persons with 57.9 percent, agriculture sector followed with 22.1 percent and the industry sector with the least share of employed persons with 20.0 percent (Table 1).
Employed persons in the industry and services sectors increased by 7.2 percent and 6.6 percent, respectively, from July 2020 to July 2021. On the other hand, workers in the agriculture sector decreased by 15.5 percent over the same period. (Table B)
The following sub-sectors showed increase in their employment from July 2020 to July 2021:
1. Administrative and support service activities (462 thousand);
2. Construction (411 thousand);
3. Education (223 thousand);
4. Arts, entertainment and recreation (202 thousand);
5. Professional, scientific and technical activities (187 thousand).
On the contrary, employment in these three subsectors dropped from July 2020 to July 2021:
1. Agriculture and Forestry (-1.7 million);
2. Wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles (-380 thousand);
3. Mining and quarrying (-47 thousand).
g. By sex disaggregation, labor force participation rate among men was higher at 72.4 percent compared to women at 47.1 percent. Employment rate among men was 93.7 percent while it was 92.3 percent among women. However, unemployment rate among men was lower at 6.3 percent than among women at
h. Unemployment at the regional level in July 2021 showed that six of the 17 regions registered rates higher than the national estimate of 6.9 percent, namely, National Capital Region (NCR) (9.0%), Region VII-Central Visayas (8.8%), Bangsamoro Autonomous Region In Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) (8.2%),
i. Underemployment in some areas of the country was reportedly high. Four regions had more than 25 percent underemployment rates reported in July 2021. These were MIMAROPA with 31.2 percent; Bicol Region, 30.4 percent; Eastern Visayas, 27.6 percent; and Cagayan Valley with 25.3 percent. (Table 4)
j. Youth labor force participation rate (LFPR) in July 2021 decreased to 33.3 percent from the reported 38.9 percent in July 2020. Employment rate among youth increased by 7.0 percentage points from 77.6 percent in July 2020 to 84.6 percent in July 2021. While there was an increase in youth employment, there was also an increase in underemployment from 15.7 percent in July 2020 to 19.0 percent this July 2021. Employed youth worked on average of
DENNIS S. MAPA, Ph.D.
National Statistician and Civil Registrar General