Press release 22.7.2008

Employment and unemployment in June 2008

- Number of employed persons 49,000 higher than one year earlier
- Employment rate 74.4 per cent
- Unemployment rate 6.8 per cent, 195,000 unemployed
- 37,000 new vacancies at employment offices
- In the January to June period of 2008, average number of employed persons 54,000 higher than in the respective period of 2007

According to the Labour Force Survey of Statistics Finland, the number of employed persons in June was 2,668,000, or 49,000 higher than a year earlier. The number of wage and salary earners and self-employed persons went up. Among wage and salary earners, the number of full-time employees increased and that of fixed-term employees decreased. The number of employed persons went up in the Provinces of Southern and Eastern Finland.

In June, the employment rate, that is, the proportion of the employed among persons aged 15 to 64, stood at 74.4 per cent, which was 0.9 percentage points higher than one year before. The employment rate of men was 76.5 per cent and that of women 72.2 per cent. Adjusted for seasonal and random variation, the trend of the employment rate was 71.0 per cent.

Changes in the labour force 6/2007 - 6/2008, thousand persons

  June 2008 June 2007 CHANGE, %
6/07 - 6/08
Statistics Finland's Labour Force Survey:
Employed, total 2 668 2 619 1.9
- wage and salary earners 2 334 2 300 1.5
- self-employed and assisting family members 334 319 4.4
Employment rate, % 74.4 73.5 0.92
Unemployed1 195 209 -6.7
Unemployment rate, % 6.8 7.4 -0.62
Labour force, total 2 862 2 828 1.2
Labour force participation rate, % 71.5 71.1 0.42
Economically inactive, total 1 141 1 152 -0.9
       
Employment Service Statistics of the Ministry of Employment and the Economy
Unemployed job seekers 208 225 -7.4
- unemployed over a year 44 52 -16.0
Employed with subsidised measures 37 41 -8.7
In labour market training 23 25 -9.5
In trainee and job alternation places 17 17 -2.0
New vacancies at employment offices 37 37 -0.7
 Unrounded figures are used in the CHANGE column.
 1 Based on the recommendations of the International Labour Organisation.
2 percentage points

According to the Labour Force Survey, there were 195,000 unemployed in June 2008, i.e. 14,000 fewer than in June of the year before. At 6.8 per cent, the unemployment rate was 0.6 percentage points lower than one year earlier. The trend of the unemployment rate was 6.3 per cent in June.

The rate of unemployment was lowest in the Province of Southern Finland, where it stood at 5.6 per cent, and highest in the Province of Lapland, at 11.9 per cent. In June 2008, the unemployment rate among young people aged 15 to 24 was 16.7 per cent, which was 1.3 percentage points lower than in the previous year's June. The trend of the unemployment rate among young people was 15.8 per cent.

According to the Labour Force Survey, the average number of employed persons in the second quarter of 2008 running from April to June was 2,574,000, which is 50,000 higher than in the respective quarter of the year before. The number of unemployed persons was 202,000, which is 8,000 fewer than in the April to June period of 2007.

In the January to June period of 2008, the average number of employed persons was 2,524,000 persons, or 54,000 higher than in the respective period of 2007. The number of unemployed persons was 189,000, which is 15,000 fewer than in the January to June period of 2007.

At the end of June 2008, there were altogether 208,000 persons registered, in accordance with the Unemployment Security Act and the Labour Exchange Office Regulations, as job seekers at the employment offices. The number of unemployed job seekers was 17,000 lower than in June 2007. Unemployment fell from the previous year in the areas of all Employment and Economic Development Centres. The number of persons covered by employment policy measures was 6,000 lower than in June of the year before, and stood at 2.7 per cent of the labour force. There were 25,000 unemployed job seekers aged under 25 registered at the employment offices. Their number was 2,000 lower than in last year's June. During this June, 37,000 new vacancies were reported to the employment offices, which is the same number as in June 2007.

Differences between the Labour Force Survey and the Employment Service Statistics

The employment situation is monitored monthly both with the sample-based Labour Force Survey of Statistics Finland and with the register-based Employment Service Statistics of the Ministry of Employment and the Economy. The Employment Service Statistics describe the situation on the last weekday of the month. The data for the Labour Force Survey are collected for every week of the month.

The Labour Force Survey follows the recommendations of the International Labour Organisation (ILO) and the practices required by Eurostat, the Statistical Office of the European Communities. According to them, a person is classified as unemployed if he or she is aged 15 or over, does not have a job, has actively sought employment in the past four weeks and would be available for work within two weeks. The Employment Service Statistics are based on legislation and administrative regulations.

The Labour Force Survey and the Employment Service Statistics apply two basically different statistical criteria to how actively a person seeks work and makes him/herself available on the labour market. Due to the statistical differences, the number of unemployed job seekers may not agree with the number of unemployed calculated in accordance with the ILO recommendations.

Since the Labour Force Survey is a sample survey, its data allow for random variation. For example, the 95 per cent confidence interval, or the margin of error, for the June unemployment rate is about ± 0.5 percentage points. The confidence interval for the June number of unemployed is approximately ± 16,000 persons.

Inquiries: Statistics Finland: Mr Pekka Tossavainen +358 9 1734 3517, Mr Juha Martikainen +358 9 1734 3225, Mr Veli Rajaniemi +358 9 1734 3434. Information service/Labour Force Survey +358 9 1734 2030, tyovoimatutkimus@stat.fi
Labour Force Survey home page: http://www.stat.fi/til/tyti/index_en.html

Ministry of Employment and the Economy: Mr Mikko Kauppinen +358 10 60 48045,

Internet: http://www.tem.fi/employmentbulletin

Latest seasonally adjusted employment figures published by the EU

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