Ina Opperman

By Ina Opperman

Business Journalist

Quarterly employment stats show SA shed another 86 000 jobs

Compared to the first quarter, second quarter employment statistics look quite bad, despite looking better than the second quarter of 2020.

The latest quarterly employment statistics show that South Africa has lost another 86 000 jobs in the formal sector during the second quarter of 2021, from 9 652 000 people employed in March 2021 to 9 566 000 in June 2021.

The decline is largely due to job losses in community services, while more people were employed in mining and transport.

However, total employment increased by 60 000 between June 2020 and June 2021. According to Statistics SA’s Quarterly Employment Statistics, the community services sector shed 65 000 jobs in the second quarter, while the manufacturing sector shed 15 000, construction 7 000, electricity 1 000, and business services also 1 000. The trade industry reported no quarterly change, while the mining sector added 2 000 jobs and the transport sector another 1 000.

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Fulltime employment

Fulltime employment decreased by 17 000 between June 2020 and June 2021, while part-time employment increased by 77 000 between June 2020 and June 2021.

Fulltime employment decreased by 27 000 from 8 602 000 in March 2021 to 8 575 000 in June 2021, mainly due to 17 000 jobs lost in business services, 16 000 in manufacturing, 11 000 in construction, 5 000 in trade, 1 000 in electricity and 1 000 in transport.

An increase in jobs was reported in community services, that added 22 000 jobs, and mining that added 2 000 jobs.

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Part-time employment

Part-time employment decreased by 59 000 from 1 050 000 in March 2021 to 991 000 in June 2021, largely due to decreases in the community services industry that shed 87 000 jobs.

The electricity industry reported no quarterly change and business services added 16 000 jobs, trade 5 000, construction 4 000, transport 2 000 and manufacturing 1 000.

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Gross earnings

Gross earnings increased by R70,4 billion between June 2020 and June 2021, and by R55,2 billion or (9,2%) between June 2020 and June 2021.

Employees’ gross earnings decreased by R0,1 billion from R715,2 billion in March 2021 to R715,1 billion in June 2021 with business services and mining reported the most decreases, while gross earnings increased for employees in transport, trade, construction, manufacturing, community services and electricity.

According to StatsSA, the average monthly earnings increased by 1,7% from R23 127 in February 2021 to R23 526 in May 2021.

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Basic salaries, bonuses and overtime

Basic salaries or wages paid to employees increased by R7,3 billion from R646,7 billion in March 2021 to R653,9 billion in June 2021, thanks to increases in business services, trade, manufacturing, transport, construction and electricity, while the salary bill for the mining and community services industries decreased.

Bonus and overtime payments increased by R15,1 billion between June 2020 and June 2021, but decreased by R7,4 billion from R68,5 billion in March 2021 to R61,2 billion in June 2021, largely due to decreases in the business services, manufacturing and trade industries, while increases were reported for transport, community services, electricity and construction.