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A view of Singapore skyline, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Singapore July 14, 2020. REUTERS/Edgar Su (REUTERS)
A view of Singapore skyline, amid the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak, in Singapore July 14, 2020. REUTERS/Edgar Su (REUTERS)

Singapore unemployment rate rises to 16-year high

  • The Monetary Authority of Singapore said earlier this week that the city-state’s recovery will likely be 'gradual and uneven' and that the labour market is expected to 'only expand gradually' next year

Singapore’s overall unemployment rate in the third quarter rose to 3.6%, the highest since 2004, reflecting the sustained challenges to its economy from the coronavirus pandemic.

A median 3.7% was forecast in a Bloomberg survey before the data Friday from the Ministry of Manpower.

The Monetary Authority of Singapore said earlier this week that the city-state’s recovery will likely be “gradual and uneven" and that the labor market is expected to “only expand gradually" next year. The central bank sees the economy contracting by 5% to 7% this year.

Singapore has deployed about S$100 billion ($73 billion) in fiscal stimulus, including wage subsidies and rent relief, as well as longer-term efforts to digitize business and retrain retrenched workers. Policy makers have signaled that they plan further fiscal support in the upcoming budget, to be released early next year.

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