Philippine Labor Force Survey January 2000

Reference Number: 2000-018
Release Date: March 15, 2000

(Preliminary Results)


Philippines January
Total 15 years old & over (in 000) 48,945 48,637 48,332 48,024 47,719
Labor force Participation (in 000)
Rate (%)
Employment (in 000)
Rate (%)
Unemployment (in 000)
Rate (%)
Underemployment (in 000)
Rate (%)
  • Compared to January 1999, labor force population was 680 thousand more than in January 2000, increasing the number of employed up by 527 thousand (1.9%) and the number of unemployed by 153 thousand (5.5%).
  • Employment in services in January 2000 gained 3.6 percent over January 1999.
  • Employment in agriculture increased by 1.0 percent in January 2000 over January 1999.
  • Employment in industry declined by 0.7 percent.


Persons aged 15 years old and over...

  • Persons aged 15 years old and over increased by 2.6 percent or 1.23 million from 47.7 million in January 1999 to 48.9 million in January 2000.

Of the 48.9 million persons 15 years old and over, there were those who joined the labor force...

  • Persons joining the labor force expanded to 31.8 million in January 2000 from 31.2 million a year ago. This reflects an increase of 2.2 percent or 680 thousand.
  • Those who were not in the labor force, like housewives, students, disabled and retired persons increased by 3.3 percent from 16.6 million a year ago to 17.1 million in January 2000.
  • The labor force participation rate, or the proportion of those in the labor force to those aged 15 years old and over, slightly decreased to 65.1 percent in January 2000 from 65.3 percent in January 1999.

Of the 31.8 million persons in the labor force, there were those who were employed and those who were not...

  • Despite the increase of 1.9 percent to 527 thousand in employment in January this year, the employment rate dropped to 90.7 percent this year from 91.0 percent last year. This indicates that the increase in the number of employed persons did not keep up with the increase in the labor force population.

Of the 28.9 million employed persons, there were those either working in agriculture, industry or services...

  • The services sector absorbed most of the additional employed workforce amounting to 13.1 million in January 2000, up from 12.6 million in January 1999 especially among wage and salary workers.
  • Meanwhile the agriculture sector also showed a growing trend depicting an increase of 1.0 percent over the same period last year. Wage and salary workers, as well as own-account workers, contributed to the increase in agriculture employment.
  • On the contrary, the industry group continued to decline in January 2000 at 0.7 percent compared to last year. The decline in industry employment were mostly contributed by wage and salary workers which decreased by 54 thousand (-1.5%).

Of the 449 thousand increase in services...

  • Wholesale and retail trade contributed much to the increase where the number rose to 4.6 million in January 2000 from 4.4 million in January 1999. Community, social and personal services also increased by 172 thousand along with transportation, storage and communication by 64 thousand, and financing, insurance, real estate and business services by 6 thousand.

Of the 109 thousand increase in agriculture, fishery and forestry...

  • The agriculture, fishery and forestry absorbed the bulk of employed persons in the labor force. Almost 40.0 percent worked in this sector, increasing by 109 thousand (1.0%) over January 1999. Wage and salary workers contributed substantially to the increase at 80 thousand (3.1%) and own-account workers at 42 thousand (0.7%) while unpaid family workers decreased by 12 thousand (-0.4 %).

Of the 31 thousand decrease in industry�

  • Employment level in the industrial sector declined to 4.42 million in January 2000 from 4.45 million a year ago. This could be due to the decreases posted in construction (1.48 million from 1.52 million) and electricity, gas and water (121 thousand from 138 thousand).
  • Meanwhile, both manufacturing and mining and quarrying posted increases in employment at 19 thousand and 6 thousand, respectively.

Of the employed, there were those who were paid wages and salaries, worked on their account, or worked for the family�

  • The 527 thousand increment in the January 2000 employment level came mostly from wage and salary workers as the number rose by 2.0 percent to almost 14.2 million from 13.9 million or an increase of 283 thousand.
  • Own-account workers also increased by 193 thousand (1.8%) while unpaid family workers increased by 51 thousand (1.3%).
  • In terms of proportion to total employment, the proportion of both wage and salary and own-account workers remained with shares of 49.0 and 37.4 percent, respectively. The share of unpaid family workers to total employment declined by 0.1 percentage point.

The employed by region...

  • Except for the National Capital Region, all regions registered increases in employment levels ranging from two (2) thousand to 108 thousand. Central Luzon posted the highest increase of 108 thousand. Central Visayas followed next at 54 thousand. The least number of increase in employment was in Southern Mindanao at two (2) thousand.
  • On the other hand, employment levels in the National Capital Region decreased by 11 thousand (-0.3%).
  • Eight of the sixteen administrative regions posted increases in employment rate with the Cordillera Administrative Region posting the highest increase of 1.7 percentage points, from 92.9 percent to 94.6 percent. The least increase in employment rate was recorded in Southern Mindanao at 0.1 percentage point.
  • On the other hand, the biggest decline in employment rate was registered in Southern Tagalog (89.5%, from 91.1%), Bicol (91.5%, from 92.8%) and Central Mindanao (93%, from 94.2%).

The employed by number of hours worked...

  • Full-time workers or those who worked for 40 hours or more increased by 333 thousand from 18.0 million in January 1999 to 18.4 million this year. The proportion of these workers to total employment remained at 63.6 percent.
  • The number of employed persons who worked for less than 40 hours increased both in levels and proportion to total employment. The estimate of 9.9 million persons (34.9% of total) in January 1999 increased to 10.1 million (35.1%) this year.

The employed by occupation...

  • Occupation-wise, all groups posted increases in levels with sales workers posting the highest increment of 183 thousand (4.4%). This was followed by agricultural, animal husbandry and forestry workers, fishermen and hunters at 101 thousand (0.9%).
  • Agricultural workers declined in employment share, from 39.5 percent to 39.2 percent. Production workers and service workers also decreased in proportion to total employment by 0.3 and 0.1 percentage point, respectively.

Of the employed, there were those who desired more hours of work, the underemployed...

  • The number of underemployed persons in January 2000 decreased by 152 thousand (-2.4%). The corresponding underemployment rate dropped by 0.9 percentage point, from 22.1 percent to 21.2 percent.
  • Most of the underemployed were in agriculture (48.2%). This figure was higher compared to 48.0 percent last year. The underemployment decreased from 1.05 million to 989 thousand in the industry sector and from 2.21 million to 2.18 million in the services sector.

And there were those who looked for work and did not find any, the unemployed...

  • The January 2000 unemployment rate was estimated at 9.3 percent, higher than the rate of 9.0 percent last year.
  • Likewise, unemployment levels increased by 153 thousand from 2.8 million to 2.95 million.
  • The National Capital Region, Central Luzon, Southern Tagalog and Central Visayas posted two-digit unemployment rate of 16.2, 10.2, 10.5 and 10.1 percent, respectively.

Labor Force by Year

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Income and Employment Statistics Division 
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