AFFORDABLE TREATS. Customers buy street foods, such as ‘kwek-kwek’ (fried quail eggs) and melon juice, at a stall at Quiapo Church in Manila on Wednesday (April 6, 2022). Street food stalls have been a regular fixture of busy roads in Metro Manila.  (MNS photo)

MANILA, Apr 7 (Mabuhay) — The unemployment rate in the Philippines settled at 6.4 percent for the month of February, the state statistics bureau’s Labor Force Survey released Thursday showed.

Although the unemployment rate was unchanged compared to January 2022, February’s total jobless Filipinos reached 3.13 million, higher than the 2.93 million the previous month, National Statistician Dennis Mapa said in a briefing.

February’s unemployment rate is lower than the 8.8 percent of 4.19 million jobless Filipinos in the same comparable period last year, the PSA said.

2.93 million Filipinos jobless; unemployment eases to 6.4 pct in January

Underemployment, meanwhile, eased to 14 percent in February compared to 14.9 percent in January and 18.2 percent in the same period last year.

February’s underemployment is equivalent to 6.38 million, data showed.

The employment rate for February was also steady at 93.6 percent with 45.48 million Filipinos, compared to the 43.02 million the previous month.

Unemployment ballooned when the pandemic started in early 2020 due to lockdowns imposed to stem the spread of the disease. (MNS)

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