The formal non-agricultural sector sheds 16 000 jobs in September 2018

The Quarterly Employment Survey (QES) for the third quarter of 2018, shows a decrease of 16 000 jobs. Job losses occurred in the manufacturing (-7 000), construction (-5 000), mining  (-2 000), trade (-2 000), transport (-1 000), and community services (-1 000) industries.

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The manufacturing and construction industries accounted for about three-quarters of the decline in employment over the quarter. Whilst both these industries have recorded quarterly job losses, when looking at the annual job levels, they continue to trend downwards since December 2017.

Total employment was up by 17 000 over the year, bringing the total in the formal non-agricultural sector to 9 733 000.

Business services employment changed little in September (+2 000) whilst employment in the electricity industry remained unchanged in the quarter.

Total earnings paid to employees increased by R26 billion to R653 billion over the quarter and were up by R35 billion over the year. Quarterly increases in gross earnings were recorded in the community services (+R15 billion), business services (+R7,8 billion), mining (+R1,8 billion), trade (+R796 million), manufacturing (+R711 million), electricity (+R92 million), and transport (+R74 million) industries.

The increase in gross earnings was driven by community services and business services collectively, contributing almost 88% to the increase.

There was a decrease in gross earnings in the construction industry (-R392 million).

Average monthly earnings for all formal non-agricultural sector employees rose by R697 in August to R20 860 .Over the past twelve months, average monthly earnings have increased by 5,0%.