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Labour Market Report: January to March 2015

Monday, February 9th, 2015

Job and wage security weakened less during the fourth quarter of 2014 than it did during the previous quarter but it is nevertheless still declining. This is the finding of trade union Solidarity and ETM Analytics based on their latest quarterly index on job and wage security in South Africa, which was released today.

Solidarity Research Institute Head, Piet le Roux, says although the index shows signs of improvement it is still indicative of a tendency to retrench in various sectors. The index is also indicating a tendency for real wages to decrease. Le Roux says that the index has indicated declining job and wage security since the first quarter of 2011.

“Solidarity’s latest index indicates that job security increased to 44,5 in the fourth quarter of 2014 from 42,1 in the third quarter of 2014. With 50 the breakeven point between falling and rising wage and job security, the fourth quarter’s index reading indicates less of a deteriorating labour market than the third quarter,” Le Roux says.

The index forms part of the Solidarity and ETM Analytics Labour Market Report, a quarterly commentary on labour market events. It includes discussion of the following labour market topics:

  • The myth of graduate unemployment in South Africa

Solidarity Research Institute senior researcher Paul Joubert dispels the myth of graduate unemployment in South Africa, concluding that in South Africa only about a 100 000 thousand graduates out of two million are unemployed at any given stage.

  • Taking stock of trade unions in South Africa

Drawing on commentary from Solidarity General Secretary, Gideon du Plessis, Gerhard van Onselen, Solidarity Research Institute researcher, surveys organised labour and provides an indication of negotiations and labour politics that can be expected in 2015.

  • Sabotaging employment: The Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF)

Should the Unemployment Insurance Fund halve its fees, it would free up in the economy the equivalent of a fund large enough for the private sector to sustain 157 000 entry-level employees at R4 000 per month.

  • What you should know about South Africa’s economy

Rob Price, ETM Market strategist, summarises all the important points, warning that falling commodity prices are a double-edged sword for the local economy.

  • Is there deflation in South Africa?

Russell Lamberti, ETM Chief Strategist, reaches the conclusion that there is no deflation in South Africa, but even if it had been the case, it would not have been undesirable.

Click here to view the Solidarity Research Institute’s Labour Market Report: January to March 2015.

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