Number of employed further up
In September, 3.7 million people aged 15 to 74 years did not have paid work for a variety of reasons. Aside from the unemployed, 3.3 million people were not looking and/or immediately available for work; they are not counted towards the labour force. This mainly concerns people who are retired or unable to work due to illness or disability. Their number has dropped by an average of 11 thousand per month over the past three months.
The number of people not in work has declined almost continuously in recent years. Of this group, an increasingly smaller portion are looking for or immediately available for work.
Unemployment rate in September at 3.8 percent
In order to enable comparison of cyclical developments in the labour market across countries, the unemployment indicator of the International Labour Organization (ILO) is used as a measure. According to this indicator, the unemployed are those who are not in paid work, but have been looking recently and are immediately available. This figure refers to the population aged 15 to 74 years. In April 2022, unemployment came out at 3.2 percent, the lowest rate in the series with monthly figures as of 2003. It subsequently increased to 3.8 percent in August. In September, the unemployment rate also stood at 3.8 percent, comparable to the level at the end of 2021.
|Unemployment indicator (ILO) (15 to 74 yrs, seasonally adjusted) (x 1,000)||WW unemployment benefits (15 yrs to state pension age) (x 1,000)|
UWV: decline in benefits comes to a halt
At the end of September 2022, UWV was providing 152 thousand WW benefits. This represents a slight increase of 0.2 percent, ending a months-long decline. Relative to September 2021, the number of current WW benefits was down by 55 thousand (-26.9 percent).
In September 2022, 21.8 thousand new WW benefits were granted while 21.5 thousand benefits were terminated.
UWV: different picture for each sector
The development of the number of current WW benefits across the sectors give a mixed picture. The number of benefits was down in other manufacturing (-4.2 percent), the cleaning industry (-2.7 percent) and the chemical industry (-2.6 percent), while a slight increase was shown in agriculture, greenery and fisheries (+2.4 percent), the food, beverage and tobacco industry (+2.2 percent), other commercial services (+2.0 percent) and the public sector (+2.0 percent).
Not all unemployed people receive benefits. Those who were previously not in work, but start looking for work and are available, are also counted towards the unemployed. However, they cannot claim any WW benefits.
More job losses
The rise in unemployment over the past three months (by 43 thousand in total and by 14 thousand per month on average) is the result of underlying flows between the active, unemployed and inactive labour force. This is visualised in the diagram below.
The diagram shows that unemployment may increase not only because people in work lose their job, but also because people enter the labour force who were previously not part of it. As soon as these people start seeking work and are available, they also become part of the unemployed.
The net inflow from the inactive labour force (balance of inflow and outflow) is usually the most important reason for unemployment growth. As of June of this year, the inflow of previously employed who lost their job has increased, while the flow from unemployed to employed labour force has remained virtually unchanged. On balance, this resulted in a relative small outflow from unemployment to employment (6 thousand) in September.
|Jaar||Maand||Outflow from unemployment to employment (balance) (x 1,000)|
On the other hand, the net inflow from inactive to unemployed labour force was higher as of May than in the previous months this year. In September as well, it was relatively high (49 thousand). As a result, unemployment grew by 43 thousand as of June, i.e. 14 thousand per month on average. Due to the smaller outflow into employment and the larger net inflow from the inactive labour force, unemployment rose from 339 thousand in June to 382 thousand in September.
|Jaar||Maand||Net inflow to unemployment from inactive labour force (x 1,000)|
Every month, CBS publishes figures on the Dutch labour force in accordance with international guidelines. The corresponding indicators, i.e. the employed and unemployed labour force, are used around the world to describe cyclical developments on the labour market. Monthly figures are essential in this respect. In addition, UWV issues its own monthly figures on unemployment benefits. Figures released by UWV do not correspond one-to-one with the labour force indicators.
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