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Unemployment up slightly to 3.9% in August (update)

Unemployment up slightly to 3.9% in August (update)

Taipei, Sept. 22 (CNA) Taiwan's unemployment rate in August was 3.9 percent, up 0.08 percentage points from July but down 0.18 points from a year ago, according to government figures released Tuesday. The August jobless rate was the lowest recorded for the month since August 2000, when unemployment was 3.16 percent, the Directorate General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said. After seasonal adjustments, the jobless rate was 3.74 percent in August, the same as in July, statistics showed. Seasonally adjusted unemployment has ranged between 3.74 percent and 3.78 percent in the first eight months of 2015. In August, the number of unemployed in Taiwan stood at 456,000, up 11,000 from a month earlier, the DGBAS said. The number of employed rose 19,000 from a month earlier to 11.23 million, with the labor participation rate up 0.11 percentage points to 58.85 percent. The number of first-time job seekers rose 6,000 month-on-month, mainly due to a large number of fresh graduates entering the job market, the agency said. There were 3,000 more people who were out of work in August than in July due to business closures or downsizing and 2,000 more who resigned and sought new jobs. The number of those who lost jobs due to the termination of their temporary work contracts rose by 1,000 from a month earlier. The DGBAS said the jobless rate for the 20-24 age bracket in August stood at 13.64 percent, down 0.38 percentage points from the year-earlier level, while the unemployment rate for the 25-29 age group decreased 0.22 percentage points year-on-year to 6.71 percent. The jobless rate for people holding university degrees or higher decreased 0.26 percentage points from last year to 5.07 percent. In the first eight months of this year, the average jobless rate stood at 3.73 percent, down 0.26 percentage points from a year earlier, and was 3.75 percent on a seasonally adjusted basis. The average local labor participation rate for the eight-month period reached 58.61 percent, up 0.11 percentage points, the DGBAS said. (By Chen Cheng-wei and Y.F. Low)