MIDF Research sees labour market improving, jobless rate to remain at 3.4% in 2024

MIDF Research sees labour market improving, jobless rate to remain at 3.4% in 2024

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s labour market continued on an improving trend as the average jobless rate is predicted to remain at 3.4 per cent this year and the labour market is expected to strengthen further in 2024, backed by encouraging momentum in the domestic economy and recovery in external trade, said MIDF Research.

In a note today, the research house said the return of non-citizen workers is expected to boost overall employment and reduce the jobless rate.

“As of the third quarter of 2023 (3Q 2023), non-citizens’ employment is almost 0.8 per cent lower than pre-pandemic levels.

“The downside risks to Malaysia’s labour market among others is lower-than-expected external trade recovery and a drop in global commodity prices,” it said.

According to MIDF Research, in 2023, the jobless rate averaged at 3.4 per cent and the unemployment rate was maintained at post-pandemic low of 3.3 per cent in December 2023.

It said the labour force and employment improved further by 2.0 per cent and 2.4 per cent respectively while unemployed persons declined by 8.1 per cent while the outside labour force fell by 0.5 per cent.

MIDF Research expects job vacancies to hover at 100,000-120,000 per month in 2024 amid external trade recovery and resilient domestic demand.

“Malaysia’s job vacancies registered at 113,600 in November 2023. The monthly average job vacancies dipped below post-pandemic levels of 173,5000 in the 11 months of 2023 (2021: 206,700, 2022: 396,100).

“In comparison, monthly average during 2010-2019 was at 114,000,” it said. -Bernama


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