The South African formal sector employment shrank by 67 000 jobs in the second quarter of this year.
According to the June 2016 Quarterly Employment Statistics (QES) survey released by Statistics South Africa, an estimated 9 218 000 persons were employed in the formal non-agricultural sector of the South African economy.
Quarterly employment losses were observed in all industries except in electricity and construction industries.
The most job losses occurred in the Community, social and personal services industry, with 48 000 jobs being lost. These numbers are reflective of the temporary jobs that were created by the IEC during the recent local government elections, which usually fall away once the elections are over.
Although the quarter to quarter figures show a decrease in employment, but on the whole there was an annual increase of 30 000 jobs between the second quarters of 2015 and 2016.
The manufacturing industry continued to lose jobs in the quarter ending in June 2016. The industry shed 7 000 jobs from quarter 1 to quarter 2. In total, on a year to year basis 16 000 jobs were lost between June 2015 to June 2016. Most of the job losses were observed in the industries involved in the manufacturing of food products, beverages and tobacco products, resulting in a decline of 5 000 jobs. The manufacturing of textile, clothing and leather goods lost 3 000 jobs.
The mining industry also continued to decline in the second quarter. The figures show that this is the eighth consecutive decline since the fourth quarter of 2014 in this industry. Year on year, the sector shed 32 000 jobs compared with the same quarter last year.
However the total gross earnings paid to employees across the sectors increased, amounting to R523 billion in the quarter ending in June 2016 – which reflects an increase of R30 million compared with the previous quarter. There was an annual increase of R31 billion (6,3%) for the quarter ending June 2016, compared with the same quarter of the previous year.