World Economy

20% EU Part-Timers Underemployed

20% EU Part-Timers Underemployed
20% EU Part-Timers Underemployed

More than one-in-five EU part-time workers are underemployed according to data published Monday by Eurostat, the EU’s statistics office. More than a quarter of part-timers in Ireland are underemployed.

Among the 44.1m persons in the European Union (EU) working part-time in 2014, 9.8m were underemployed meaning they wished to work more hours and were available to do so, Finfacts reported.

This corresponds to 22.2% of all part-time workers and 4.5% of total employment in the EU in 2014. The large majority of part-time workers being underemployed in the EU were women (67%).

In Greece the ratio was at 72%, Cyprus 66% and in Spain 57%, the report said.

In Ireland in 2014 the average number underemployed was at 128,000 or 28.7% of the part-time workforce — this was equivalent to 6.7% of total employment. At the end of December 2014, there were 115,500 part-time workers who were seeking more work hours from a total of 446,400 part-time workers — 25.8%.

The gender split of the underemployed was more balanced in Ireland with 61,400 females and 54,000 males.

Eurostat said that alongside the economically active population, 11.6m economically inactive persons aged 15-74 in the EU had in 2014 a certain attachment to the labor market and could be considered as a potential additional labor force, equivalent to 4.8% of the EU labor force.

Among them, 9.5m were available to work but not seeking, such as discouraged job seekers, and 2.2m seeking work but not immediately available, for example students seeking a job to start after graduation. The majority of this almost 12m total potential additional labor force in the EU in 2014 were also women (57%).

Eurostat said the total potential labor force in Ireland was 46,000.