World Economy

Japan Jobless Rate Falls to 24-Year Low

Japan Jobless Rate Falls to 24-Year LowJapan Jobless Rate Falls to 24-Year Low

Japan’s unemployment rate fell to 2.4% in January, the lowest in over 24 years, and job availability remained at a four-decade high, government data showed Friday, Kyodo reported. The figures suggest companies are facing intensifying competition to secure workers as the economy enjoys its second-longest postwar economic expansion cycle. Tightness in the job market, however, has yet to fully translate into robust wage growth—a headache for policymakers grappling with pulling the economy out of deflation. The unemployment rate fell 0.3 percentage point from December to the lowest level since April 1993. It has stayed below 3% since June 2017, internal affairs and communications ministry data showed. The jobs-to-applicants ratio stood at 1.59 in January, unchanged from December and staying at its highest level since January 1974, according to the health, labor and welfare ministry. This means there were 159 job openings for every 100 workers. “Japan’s employment conditions have been steadily improving,” an internal affairs ministry official said. Unemployment among women dropped 0.5 point from December to 2.2%, the lowest since October 1992.


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