Global Talent Update - October 2015

GlobeEurope, Middle East and Africa

Countries throughout Europe, the Middle East and Africa have all been experiencing varying rates of success in stabilizing their employment situations. Some nations have seen record-breaking lows, while others are struggling to maintain strong job markets.

A recent report from the UK's Office for National Statistics revealed that the nation's unemployment rate reached a seven-year low in the three months leading up to August. The jobless rate reached 5.4 per cent, an average that has not been recorded since mid-2008. The overall employment rate hit 73.6 per cent, a figure that had not been seen since 1971. Earnings rose throughout the UK during this time as well, with average weekly earnings increasing by 2.8 per cent.

Unemployment has been on the rise in Dubai, and is expected to continue to climb over the next few years. Gulf News reported that while the nation's current jobless average is at 12 per cent, it is expected to hit at least 16 per cent by 2020. The source explained that this is largely because gulf coast countries anticipate that about 2 million workers will enter the workforce during this time, and that private and public sector hiring will not be able to keep up with demand.

South African unemployment has also been on the rise, as recent figures show it jumping by 1.8 per cent during the three months to June 2015. Over 160,000 residents lost their jobs between the second quarter of 2104 and the same quarter in 2015. The industries that sustained the most notable losses were construction and manufacturing, while the quarrying and mining sectors remained relatively solid.

Asia-Pacific

Employment situations varied throughout Asia recently. While some countries maintained economic stability, others saw their unemployment rates climb. Many increases in joblessness were attributed to recent graduates ramping up their employment searches.

According to Xinhua, China's unemployment rate increased during the month of September, hitting 5.2 per cent. The source explained that the jobless rate was noticeably higher than the previous two months mostly because an increased amount of recent graduates entered the job market. Many people who identified as unemployed were on the younger end of the working population, while joblessness among people ages 25-60 was relatively solid.

Unemployment was also on the rise in Taiwan, where the latest figures show that the jobless rate hit 3.9 per cent at the end of August. This number represents an increase of 0.08 per cent over July's numbers, though it reveals a year-over-year decrease of 0.18 per cent, reported Focus Taiwan. Like China, Taiwan's job market was dominated by recent graduates entering the workforce, which largely accounted for the slight increase in unemployment.

Thailand's unemployment rate experienced a year-over-year increase. Thai Visa News explained that 90,000 more residents were unemployed at the end of August 2015 than at the end of August 2014. This notable shift was mainly due to a rise in the number of companies who downsized or shut down in this 12-month period.

Americas

Employment situations throughout the Americas have been extremely varied recently. While some countries experienced little change, others saw their labour markets change drastically.

The U.S. employment situation was a bit disappointing last month. The unemployment rate remained steady at 5.1 per cent, while just 142,000 jobs were added to the economy. Many sectors that had been experiencing notable growth from January to August, such as healthcare and retail, created far fewer positions in September. The country's mining industry continued its decline as well, cutting 10,000 positions.

Mexico's unemployment rate dropped recently, going from 4.8 per cent to 4.4 per cent, reported EconoTimes. While economists had previously speculated that Mexico could achieve total employment this year, the source reported that many industry professionals have since rescinded those statements. While the country's employment situation is expected to continue improving throughout the rest of 2015, its growth will be too slow to eliminate unemployment before January.

The latest numbers from Brazil reveal that the nation's unemployment has risen significantly this year, a trajectory that is expected to continue into 2016. The International Business Times reported that the nation's unemployment rate hit a record-low of 4.3 per cent in December 2014, but has since risen to 8.6 per cent. It is expected to reach 9.5 per cent before 2015 draws to a close.