Monday, March 1, 2010

Japanese Unemployment (and Employment?) Drop

The Good

Bloomberg details:

Japan’s unemployment rate unexpectedly fell in January.
The jobless rate dropped to 4.9 percent from a revised 5.2 percent in December, the statistics bureau said today in Tokyo. The median forecast of 25 economists surveyed by Bloomberg News was for the rate to be unchanged from a preliminary 5.1 percent.

A decline in the unemployment rate is one of the first signs that a rebound in exports is starting to benefit workers, whose job prospects falter last year during Japan’s worst postwar recession. It may still be too early to expect “clear improvements” in the labor market because companies still have excess workers, said economist Tatsushi Shikano.

The Bad

According to Trading Economics:
The unemployment rate is defined as the level of unemployment divided by the labour force. The employment rate is defined as the number of people currently employed divided by the adult population (or by the population of working age).