Singapore’s employment growth in the second quarter of 2023 was slower compared to the previous quarter, reflecting the impact of global economic headwinds, according to the Ministry of Manpower. The advance estimates released by the ministry show that total employment, excluding migrant domestic workers, increased by 23,700 in the April-June period, compared to a 33,000 increase in the first quarter. The growth in employment during Q2 was driven solely by non-residents, with the construction sector leading the way.
Concerns about labor market conditions in the coming quarters were expressed by the ministry, stating that firms are becoming more cautious about hiring and wage increases due to the global economic slowdown and high inflation. As a result, employment growth may further ease in the near future.
In positive news, the number of retrenchments fell to 3,200 in Q2, which is within the non-recessionary prepandemic range witnessed in 2019. This figure is lower than the 3,820 retrenchments seen in the first quarter.
The overall unemployment rate in Singapore remained stable at 1.9% in June, unchanged from May. The unemployment rates for residents and citizens also remained the same at 2.7% and 2.8% respectively, compared to the previous month.