2009 Annual Labor and Employment Status

Reference Number: 2010-038
Release Date: January 21, 2010

Philippines    2009 1/       2008   
   Population 15 years and over (in '000) 59,237 57,848
   Labor Force Participation Rate (%) 64.0 63.6
   Employment Rate (%) 92.5 92.6
   Unemployment Rate (%) 7.5 7.4
   Underemployment Rate (%) 19.1 19.3


Using the average estimates of the four LFS rounds (January, April, July and October LFS in 2009), the annual employment rate or the annual proportion of employed persons to the total labor force in the country in 2009 was 92.5 percent. Among the 17 administrative regions, the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) posted the highest employment rate at 97.7% in 2009. The National Capital Region on the other hand, ranked lowest at 87.2 percent.

Half of the estimated 35 million employed persons in 2009 were engaged in services, distributed mostly in the wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles, motorcycles and personal and household goods. About 35 percent of the employed were engaged in agriculture while the rest (14.5%) worked in the industry sector.

Occupation-wise, the laborers and unskilled workers comprised the largest group (32.5%), followed by farmers, forestry workers and fishermen (16.7%), next by officials of government and special interest organizations, corporate executives, managers, managing proprietors and supervisors (13.5%). The service workers and shop and market sales workers accounted for 10.5 percent of the total employed persons in 2009.

More than half of the total number of employed persons worked as wage and salary workers. One-third were own account workers while the rest (12%) were unpaid family workers.

Six in every ten of the employed persons were full time workers or those who worked for 40 hours and over. Those who worked less than 40 hours accounted for 36.9 percent of the total number of employed persons.

Those who were underemployed or those employed persons who express 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 totaled 6.7 millions in 2009 resulting to an underemployment rate of 19.1 percent. The highest underemployment rate across regions was in the Bicol Region at 36.3 percent while the lowest was in Central Luzon at 7.8 percent.

Meanwhile, the unemployed persons numbered 2.8 million in 2009 representing an annual unemployment rate of 7.5 percent. Unemployed males outnumbered the unemployed females (1.7 million male against 1.1 million female). Most of the unemployed persons reached high school.

The labor force population comprising either the employed or unemployed reached 37.9 million persons in 2009, with an annual labor force participation rate (LFPR) of 64.0 percent. The highest LFPR was recorded in Northern Mindanao at 70.4 percent.






Technical Notes

The annual labor and employment statistics presented in this release used the average estimates of the four Labor Force Survey (LFS) rounds conducted by the National Statistics Office (NSO) on a quarterly basis for 2008 and 2009. The use of the average estimates for annual LFS data was based on the Official Methodology for Generating Annual Labor and Employment Estimates, approved and adopted as NSCB Resolution No. 9, Series of 2009 on the 6th day of July 2009, in Pasig City.

The methodology was deemed the most appropriate among selections of other methodologies for the following reasons: a) it captures the labor and employment situation in all four quarters of the year; b) the generation or cross tabulations (e.g., by class of workers, by occupation group) is more feasible for producer of estimates; c) it is the closest method for estimating the number of persons who work four times for the entire year; and d) these estimates are being used by the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and its attached agencies and regional offices for planning/formulation of intervention programs.

Labor Force by Year

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Mechelle M. Viernes
Income and Employment Statistics Division 
Social Sector Statistics Service
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