September Job Seekers Down; But Government Employment Goals Still Not Met

The overall number of people who are employed is up very slightly, but it still falls short of the government's back-to-work targets.

File photo / Credit: iStock

The number of people in Finland registered as unemployed and looking for work in September was 275,600. That’s a fall of almost 54,000 from one year before; and down 13,200 from August.

That’s according to the latest figures released by the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment TEM. Meanwhile Statistics Finland says that Finland unemployment rate currently stands at 8%.

Employment Rates

According to Statistics Finland, the employment rate in Finland stands at 69.3% which is very slightly higher than one year before. That figure takes into account summer jobs and seasonal work in agriculture, construction and tourism for example.

The government has a goal of raising the employment rate to 72% but the latest figures show that they’re still falling short of this target.

Long Terms Numbers & New Job Vacancies

The number of long-term unemployed, that is people who have been unemployed without interruption for at least a year, was down more than 27,000 according to Statistics Finland.

The number of job seekers over 50 years old is also down 18,000 from September 2016.

The Ministry also reports that the number of new job vacancies around the country was close to 50,000 during September.

Different Numbers Explained

Every month there is some confusion around job numbers. For example, this month while the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Employment reports a big drop in the number of unemployed people looking for work, year-on-year, Statistics Finland says there are 10,000 more people unemployed this September, compared to last September.

So what’s the deal with the completely different numbers?

In the Ministry’s Employment Service Statistics, people that are not in an employment relationship or employed in business are listed as unemployed. People fully laid-off but not full-time students are also categorised as unemployed in the Employment Service Statistics.

Meanwhile, the Labour Force Survey of Statistics Finland has a stricter definition for being unemployed: a person is unemployed if he or she has actively sought employment during the preceding four weeks and is available for work over the coming two weeks. The figures of the Labour Force Survey of Statistics Finland are internationally comparable and therefore they are the official Finnish unemployment statistics.