Statistics South Africa has released the unemployment rate for the second quarter, which edged lower to 33.9% from 34.5% in the first quarter.
However, the number of unemployed people rose slightly to 7 994 000.
According to an expanded definition of unemployment that includes those discouraged from seeking work, 44.1% of the labour force was without work in the second quarter, compared with 45.5% in the first quarter.
On Monday, Absa’s Senior Economist Miyelani Maluleke said it was expected that rolling blackouts and severe flooding in KwaZulu-Natal would translate to a contraction in economic growth in the quarter.
Maluleke added: “The floods that we saw in KZN, the load shedding that we have seen through the second quarter did severely affect economic activity and will likely actually see GDP contract in Q2.”
“That would have put quite a bit of pressure on employment. The second concern is that even some of the temporary jobs that were created in the first quarter for the census would have started to fall away coming into the second quarter.”
— Stats SA (@StatsSA) August 23, 2022