Highlights of the February 2023 Labor Force Survey
1. The country’s employment rate in February 2023 remained at its previous month’s rate of 95.2 percent. In February 2022, employment rate was lower at 93.6 percent.
In terms of magnitude, the number of employed persons in February 2023 was estimated at 48.80 million, higher by 3.32 million from the 45.48 million employed persons reported in February last year.
2. The unemployment rate in February 2023 also remained at its previous month’s rate of 4.8 percent. In February 2022, unemployment rate was higher at 6.4 percent. In terms of level, the number of unemployed persons was 2.47 million out of 51.27 million Filipinos who were in the labor force in February 2023.
3. The labor force participation rate (LFPR) in February 2023 was registered at 66.6 percent or 51.27 million individuals who were either employed or unemployed out of the 77.00 million Filipinos aged 15 years and over. The reported LFPR in February 2023 was higher than the January 2023 and February 2022 LFPR at 64.5 percent and 63.8 percent, respectively.
4. The number of underemployed persons or those employed persons who expressed the desire to have additional hours of work in their present job or to have additional job, or to have a new job with longer hours of work was recorded at 6.29 million. This translates to an underemployment rate of 12.9 percent, which was lower than the reported underemployment rate in February 2022 (14.0%) and in January 2023 (14.1%).
5. The average weekly hours worked by an employed person in February 2023 was estimated at 39.5 hours per week. This was slightly lower than the average weekly hours worked in January 2023 of 39.6 hours and February 2022 of 40.8 hours. (Table A)
6. By broad industry group, services sector consistently dominated the labor market with 59.6 percent share to the total employed population in February 2023. The agriculture and industry sectors accounted for 24.1 percent and 16.3 percent of the total employed persons, respectively.
The top five sub-sectors with the highest year-on-year change in the number of employed persons from February 2022 to February 2023 were the following:
a. Wholesale and retail trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles (701 thousand); b. Accommodation and food service activities (580 thousand); c. Agriculture and forestry (554 thousand); d. Other service activities (362 thousand); and e. Fishing and aquaculture (340 thousand).
In contrast, the top five subsectors with the largest drop in terms of employed persons from February 2022 and February 2023 were the following:
a. Human health and social work activities (-129 thousand); b. Construction (-103 thousand); c. Mining and quarrying (-60 thousand); d. Information and communication (-55 thousand); and e. Manufacturing (-38 thousand).
7. In February 2023, wage and salary workers continued to contribute the largest share of employed persons with 60.9 percent of the total employed population 15 years old and over. This was followed by self-employed persons without any paid employee at 27.2 percent and unpaid family workers at 9.8 percent. Employer in own family-operated farm or business had the lowest share of 2.1 percent.
Among wage and salary workers, employed persons in private establishments made up 46.6 percent of the total employed, followed by employed in government or government-controlled corporations with 9.4 percent share.
8. Among men and women, LFPR in February 2023 was consistently higher among men (77.1%) than women at (56.1%). Likewise, employment rate for men was higher at 95.5 percent than for women at 94.7 percent. Furthermore, men had higher underemployment rate of 14.7 percent than women at 10.4 percent.
9. Youth employment rate in February 2023 was estimated at 90.9 percent. This was higher than the youth employment rate reported in January 2023 (89.2%) and February 2022 (85.7%). Employed youth worked 32.8 hours on the average per week in February 2023.