Economist expects QLFS data for Q2 to be less bleak than Q1

In the first quarter of the year, Stats SA showed the unemployment rate hit an all-time high of 32.6%.

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JOHANNESBURG - Statistics South Africa is expected to release the Quarterly Labour Force Survey for the second quarter of 2021 on Tuesday.

The announcement is due after the extended level 4 lockdown, which had a knock-on effect on the job market, forcing many businesses to temporarily or completely halt operations. In the first quarter of the year, Stats SA showed the unemployment rate hit an all-time high of 32.6%.

Economist Mike Schüssler said that as Tuesday's announcement was not expected to be as bleak as the results shown in the first quarter.

“By the second quarter, everybody who had left be it in military, education, be it university or school has typically found a job. So, I think that's normally the trend in the second quarter of every year. And now the question is, is this going to be strong enough to overcome, level three and level four of the lockdown,” he said.

He said that some sectors had contributed to the employment improvement since the second quarter started.

"There’s certainly a commodities boom and that's helping the mining industry. We also know that construction is coming back, it might not be a permanent situation,” he said.

It's not clear what the effects will be following last month's looting in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, however, government estimates that 105,000 people face a bleak future in the job market.

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