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Swiss Labour Force Survey in 2nd quarter 2019: number of persons in employment rises by 1.1 percent, unemployment rate based on the ILO definition falls to 4.2 percent

20.08.2019 – The number of employed persons in Switzerland rose by 1.1% between the 2nd quarter 2018 and the 2nd quarter 2019. During the same period, the unemployment rate as defined by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) fell from 4.6% to 4.2%. The EU unemployment rate based on the ILO definition decreased from 6.8% to 6.3%. These are some of the results from the Swiss Labour Force Survey (SLFS).

Download press release: 2nd quarter 2019: number of persons in employment rises by 1.1%, unemployment rate based on the ILO definition falls to 4.2%

Translated from German:

20.08.2019 – The number of persons in employment in Switzerland increased by 1.1% between the 2nd quarter of 2018 and the 2nd quarter of 2019. In the same period, according to the International Labor Office (ILO), the unemployment rate fell from 4.6% to 4.2%. In the European Union (EU), the unemployment rate fell from 6.8% to 6.3%. This is clear from the Swiss Labor Force Survey (SLFS).

In Switzerland, a total of 5.099 million persons were gainfully employed in the second quarter of 2019, 1.1% more than in the second quarter of 2018. The number of employed men rose by 0.3%, and that of employed women by 2.0% , In full-time equivalents (FTE), the increase was 1.0% compared to the same quarter last year. For men, FTE increased by 0.2% and women by 2.3%. Seasonally adjusted, both the number of employed persons and the number of FTEs increased slightly compared to the previous quarter (+ 0.4%, or + 0.3%).

Unemployed According to ILO, Q1 2014-Q2 2019

Unemployed According to ILO, Q1 2014-Q2 2019

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Swiss and foreign workers

Between the second quarter of 2018 and the second quarter of 2019, the number of Swiss workers rose by 0.3% to 3.489 million, while the foreign workforce increased by 2.7% to 1.611 million. Among those who were gainfully employed abroad, the increase was highest for those with a residence permit (B or L, for at least 12 months in Switzerland: + 5.7%). This was followed by cross-border workers (ID card G: + 1.7% to 320 000) and persons with a residence permit (ID card C: + 1.4%). However, those in employment with a short-stay permit (L record, less than 12 months in Switzerland) fell slightly (-0.6%).

Unemployment in Switzerland and in Europe

According to the International Labor Office (ILO), 205,000 persons were unemployed in the second quarter of 2019 in Switzerland. That’s about 21,000 fewer than a year ago. The share of the unemployed in the labor force was 4.2%, lower than in the second quarter of 2018 (4.6%). Seasonally adjusted, the unemployment rate fell slightly compared to the previous quarter from 4.6% to 4.5%. Compared to the same quarter of the previous year, it decreased both in the European Union (EU28: from 6.8% to 6.3%) and in the eurozone (EA19: from 8.2% to 7.5%).

youth unemployment

In Switzerland, according to the ILO, the youth unemployment rate (15- to 24-year-olds) dropped from 6.4% to 6.2% between the 2nd quarter of 2018 and the 2nd quarter of 2019. In the European Union (EU28: from 15.0% to 14.1%) and in the euro-zone (EA19: from 16.9% to 15.6%), the youth unemployment rate fell during this period.

Unemployment according to different characteristics

The ILO jobless rate fell in the second quarter of 2019 compared with the same quarter of the previous year among 25- to 49-year-olds (from 4.9% to 4.1%), while remaining virtually the same among the 50-64 year-olds (3 , 9%). Among women, there was a decrease (from 5.2% to 4.4%), for men from 4.1% to 3.9%. In the same period, unemployment among the Swiss fell slightly (from 3.1% to 3.0%). However, it fell sharply among foreign workers (from 8.8% to 7.3%), especially among nationals from EU-28 and EFTA countries (-1.7 percentage points). In the second quarter of 2019, the ILO’s unemployment rate was 5.1% for EU28 / EFTA nationals and 12.8% for third-country nationals.

Duration of unemployment

Between the second quarter of 2018 and the second quarter of 2019, the number of long-term unemployed persons according to the ILO (unemployed for one year or more) decreased from 93,000 to 84,000. The share of long-term unemployed in all unemployed remained around 41% in this comparative period. The median duration of unemployment fell minimally from 270 to 269 days.

Part-time work and underemployment

The number of part-time workers in the second quarter of 2019 was 1.782 million, or 1.9% more than in the same quarter last year. Among women and men, their share of gainfully employed increased only slightly (women: +0.2 percentage points, men: +0.1 percentage points). Among the part-time workers were 365 000 underemployed persons, i. People who want to work more and are available at short notice. The underemployment rate was 7.4% in the second quarter of 2019, which is similar to the second quarter of 2018 (7.3%). It reached 11.9% among women and 3.4% among men.

Unemployment Rate and Youth Unemployment Rate, Q2 2019

Unemployment Rate and Youth Unemployment Rate, Q2 2019

- Click to enlarge

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Swiss Statistics
The Swiss Federal Statistics Office publishes information on the situation and developments in Switzerland in a multitude of fields and plays a part in enabling comparisons at an internal level.
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