Employment Situation in ARMM (based on April 2016 Labor Force Survey)

April 20, 2017Special Release Ref No.: SR-ARMM-17-008
The Labor Force Survey (LFS) is a nationwide quarterly survey conducted by the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA) during the months of January, April, July, and October. For this release, the data being presented are based on the final results of the April 2016 round of the LFS with the comparison of April 2015 LFS results.
 
One in every two persons in ARMM 15 years old and over are in the labor force in April 2016
 
Labor Force refers to the population, 15 years old and over, who contribute to the production of goods and services. Of the estimated 2.26 million population of age 15 years old and over in ARMM, the number of persons who were in the labor force was estimated at 1.14 million, as shown in Table 1 below. This posted a significant decrease of approximately 13 percent from last April 2015 or 1.32 million population.
 
The labor force participation rate also reported a decrease from 55 percent in April 2015 to 50.6 percent in April 2016, i.e., one in every two persons aged 15 years and over in ARMM, were either employed or unemployed. Thus, about half (or 49.4 percent) of the said population were reported not in the labor force in April 2016. These include housewives, students, persons with disability, and those who have retired from their employment. On a national comparison, ARMM had the lowest labor participation rates both in April 2015 and 2016 across all regions in the Philippines.
 
Employment rate in ARMM declined from 96.8 percent in April 2015 to 95.5 percent in April 2016
 
The total number of employed persons was estimated at 1.09 million in April 2016, a decrease from 1.27 million in April 2015. The employment rate or the proportion of employed persons to total labor force declined from 96.8 percent in April 2016 to 95.5 percent in April 2015.
 
On the other hand, the unemployment rate or the proportion of unemployed persons to the labor force was estimated at 4.5 percent in April 2016, an increase from 3.2 percent in April 2015. This placed the number of unemployed persons at 52 thousand in April 2016. 
 
The underemployment rate or the proportion of underemployed persons to the total employed persons was estimated at 17.8 percent in April 2016, a very significant hike from 10.2 percent in April 2015; this placed the number of underemployed persons at 195 thousand and 130 thousand, correspondingly.
 
Table 1. Distribution of Population 15 Years Old and Over by Employment Status, ARMM: April 2015 & April 2016
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority, April 2015 & April 2016 LFS
Note: The result may not add up due to rounding
 
Employed refers to persons in the labor force who are reported either as at work or with a job or business although not at work.
Unemployed refers to persons in the labor force who are reported as without work; currently available for work; and seeing work or not seeking work due to belief that no work is available, or awaiting results of previous job application, or because of temporary illness or disability, or bad weather, or waiting for rehire or job recall.
Underemployed refers to employed persons who express the desire to have additional hours of work in their present job or an additional job, or a new job with longer working hours.
 
 
More than 40 percent of employed persons in the region are skilled agricultural, forestry and fishery workers in April 2016
 
Of the various occupation groups, skilled agricultural, forestry and fishery workers made up the largest group both in April 2015 and 2016 at 43.5 percent (out of 1.09 million total employed population) and 43.3 percent (out of 1.3 million total employed population), respectively, as shown in Table 2 and Figure 1 (next page). Elementary occupations made up the second largest group of workers with 32.5 percent in April 2015 and 24.7 percent in April 2016 of the total employed population.
 
Table 2. Distribution of Employed Persons 15 Years Old and Over by Major Occupation Group, ARMM: April 2015 & April 2016
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority, April 2015 & April 2016 LFS
Note: The result may not add up due to rounding
 
Managers were the third largest group accounting for 10.9 percent (April 2015) and 14.4 percent (April 2016). All other occupation groups such as Professionals, Technicians and associate professionals, clerical supports workers, craft and related trades workers, Plant and machine operators and assemblers, and armed forces occupations combined accounted for 13.2 percent in April 2015 compared to 17.8 percent in April 2016.
 
Figure 1. Frequency Distribution of Employed Persons by Major Occupation Group,ARMM: April 2015 and April 2016
 
Almost two-thirds of the employed persons were in the agriculture sector in April 2016
 
As shown in Figure 2, almost two-thirds (64.8 percent) of the employed persons in April 2016 were in the agriculture sector. Employment in the services sector was the second largest group making up 30.7 percent of the total employed persons with only 4.5 percent in the industry sector. This result, however, posted a decrease of 8.5 percent compared with the result of April 2015, as presented in Table 3. This also implies that some employed persons in April 2015 who were in the agricultural sector had engaged in either industry and services sectors in April 2016.
 
Table 3. Distribution of Employed Persons by Major Industry Group, ARMM: April 2015 & April 2016
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority, April 2015 & April 2016 LFS Note: The result may not add up due to rounding
 
Figure 2. Percent Distribution of Employed Persons by Major Industry Group, ARMM: April 2016
 
One every two employed persons in ARMM were working full time in April 2016
 
Employed workers are classified as either full-time or part-time workers. Full-time workers are those who work for 40 hours or more while part-time workers work for less than 40 hours. In April 2016, full-time workers comprised 52.8 percent of the total employed persons as shown in Table 4 and Figure 3. This represents a significant change of 22.9 percent from April 2015. Part-time workers comprised 46.5 percent of the total employed. Those working for 30 to 39 hours made up a larger share (26.4 percent of the total employed) than those working for less than 30 hours (20.2 percent).
 
Table 4. Distribution of Employed Persons by Total Hours Worked, ARMM: April 2015 & April 2016
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority, April 2015 & April 2016 LFS
Note: The result may not add up due to rounding
 
Figure 3. Percent Distribution of Employed Persons by Total Hours Worked, ARMM: April 2016
 
ARMM accounted for more than fifty percent of self-employed without paid employee
 
Employed persons fall into any of the categories of wage and salary workers, self-employed without any paid employee, employer in own family-operated farm or business and unpaid family workers. Wage and salary workers are those who work for private households, private establishments, government and government-controlled corporations and those who work with pay in own family-operated farm or business. Based on Figure 3 and Table 7 below, self-employed without any paid employee made up to 55.4 percent in April 2016; though, this is lower by 0.9 percent compared to April 2015. Work without pay in own-family operated farm or business posted the same percentage with the wage and salary workers at 20.6 percent in April 2016. Compared with the result of April 2015, the former accounted for 27.3 percent while the latter only accounted for 16 percent.
 
Table 5. Distribution of Employed Persons by Class of Workers, ARMM: April 2015 & April 2016
Source: Philippine Statistics Authority, April 2015 & April 2016 LFS
Note: The result may not add up due to rounding
 
Figure 4. Frequency Distribution of Employed Persons by Class of Workers, ARMM: April 2015 and April 2016
 
(Sgd) ABUBAKAR S. ASAAD, Ph.D. (Statistics)
Regional Director, PSA-ARMM