The unemployment rate in February period fell 1.1 points to 10.4 compared with the same period last year, offical data shows. But it has maintained its double-digit rate as the economy began to slow this year.

The unemployment rate in Turkey remained at a double-digit level of 10.4 percent in the February period, but did see a 1.1-point decrease compared with the same period in 2011. It hit 10.2 percent in the January period after nine months of single-digit unemployment levels, a report from the Turkish Statistical Institute’s (TÜİK) showed yesterday.

While the number of unemployed decreased by 243,000, falling to about 2.7 million compared to the same period of the previous year, it was up 57,000 from the previous month. According to seasonally adjusted data the unemployment rate was down by 0.1 point to 9.1 percent. TÜİK publishes unemployment data covering three-month periods; yesterday’s report pertains to January, February and March 2012.

Seasonal effects and drop in newly employed lift the joblessness rate, said Garanti Bank analyst in a report yesterday

. “It is a positive sign for growth in next quarters that seasonally adjusted unemployment rate is still low,” it said.

The seasonally adjusted number of employed individuals decreased by 66,000 compared to the previous period, and the seasonally adjusted number of unemployed increased by 22,000, the TÜİK report said.

Non-agriculture sector

The number of people employed in non-agricultural sectors continued to increase in this period, rising by 682,000, while agricultural sector employment decreased by 146,000. Non-agricultural unemployment fell to 12.7 percent from 14.2 percent.

The number of people employed increased by 536,000 compared to the same period of last year, reaching a total of 23.3 million. Employment in the service sector increased 1.8 percentage points, while employment in agriculture decreased 1.1 points and in industry and construction 0.3 point, compared with the February period in 2011.

“Employment in construction industry sharply receded with 11,000 drop, but a mere 16,000 increase in industry and limited decrease in service sector during this period. All these developments are reflections of slowing economy,” a Betam economy research report said yesterday, which noted that non-agriculture employment slowed down considerably.

The labor force participation rate fell 0.6 point to 47.9 percent in annual comparison. The rate was down by 1.5 points to 69.1 percent for men, while the rate was up by 0.2 point, reaching 27.4 percent, for women. The seasonally adjusted labor force participation rate was down by 0.1 point to 49.4 percent. The rate of illicit work fell to 37.5 percent, with 3.5 point decrease.

Women work in agriculture

Turkish women are employed mostly in the professional agricultural fields, such as live stock breeding, hunting, forestry and aquaculture, according to data compiled by the Anatolia news agency.

Some 2.1 million women work in these fields, among a total of approximately 7 million employed women as of 2011.

There are nearly 9 times more male as “lawmakers, senior executives [and] managers” than female ones. The number of males in those professions is 1.7 million, while females lag considerably behind with only 204,000 employed in those professions.

Female workers come close to their male colleagues in numbers in the office, customer services and unqualified jobs. Some 736,000 female and 930,000 male workers are employed in these fields.

Source: Hurriyet Daily News

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