Malaysia's Labour Market Continues To Recover Slowly

Malaysia’s Labour Market Continues To Recover Slowly

Labour Market

Hong Leong Investment Bank Bhd (HLIB Research) anticipates that the country’s labour market would continue to improve, particularly in the services sector.

According to the investment bank, this is benefiting from increased tourist arrivals and a shift in consumer demand spending patterns as customers prioritise their outlays on services following the pandemic’s lack of access.

“However, recent economic indicators suggest that the positive trend may remain moderate due to cautious spending habits amid high living costs and a global technology down-cycle,” the bank wrote in a note today.

Malaysia’s labour market grew further in July, supported by strong domestic demand, notably in the services sector. 

The number of unemployed people continues to fall by 0.4% month on month (MoM) and 6.7% year on year (YoY), but at a slower rate. 

Despite this, the unemployment rate remained stable in July at 3.4%. Meanwhile, employment grew at a constant 0.2% on a month-to-month basis but dropped to 2.2% on a year-to-year basis.

“Growth continued to be supported by higher employment in the services sector, in line with the shift of consumer demand from goods to services following the post-pandemic normalisation.

Related link: 3 Services Sub-Sectors in Malaysia Can Now Hire Foreign Workers

“In the services sector, the increase in employment was mainly recorded in food and beverage services, wholesale & retail trade and education activities. 

“An upward trend in employment was also observed in the construction and mining sector,” HLIB Research noted.

In terms of employment status, both employees and own account workers recorded continued growth MoM at 0.1 per cent and 0.4 per cent respectively. 

The number of employed persons, who were temporarily not working, rose to 80,900 persons.

Furthermore, the labour force expanded by 0.1% month on month and 1.9% year on year in July, while the labour force participation rate increased to 70.1 percent.

Separately, Socso reported a 4,600 increase in job losses in August, primarily in the manufacturing, wholesale and retail, and transportation industries. 

Selangor (30.2%) and Kuala Lumpur (24.8%) continued to be the two states with the greatest LOE concentration.

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