Stats SABusinessLive reports that Stats SA data revealed on Tuesday that annual growth in formal sector jobs rose marginally in the final quarter of 2019, driven by growth in community services, trade and business services.  

But the picture was likely to worsen in the year ahead, warned economists, as SA faces the consequences of a 21-day lockdown needed to slow the spread of the coronavirus.  During the fourth quarter of 2019, SA’s economy contracted by 1.4%, slipping into its second recession in as many years.  Jobs rose by 18,000, or just 0.2%, on an annual basis, down from the 1% recorded in the previous quarter.  Three sectors — community services, trade, and business services — saw an increase in jobs numbers, while the remaining five sectors recorded losses.  Total employment increased by 16,000 or 0.2% quarter on quarter.  Both the quarterly and annual figures showed sharp increases in part-time employment.  Part-time jobs account for 90% of all formal sector work, according to Stats SA.  On an annual basis, gross earnings rose by R8bn or 5.2%, including both base salaries and bonuses.

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