The number of employees in the industrial and service sectors in August was up 0.36 percent month-on-month, as the job market began recovering from a local COVID-19 outbreak, but it has yet to fully recover, the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said yesterday.
The data showed the addition of about 30,000 jobs in August that raised the overall number of employees to 8.09 million, as businesses in the service sector resumed normal operations, DGBAS Deputy Director Chen Hui-hsin (陳惠欣) told a news conference in Taipei.
Lower numbers of local COVID-19 infections enabled hospitality, recreational and non-school educational facilities to reopen their businesses at reduced capacity, Chen said.
Photo: Clare Cheng, Taipei Times
“The situation is improving, though still lagging behind what it was prior to the implementation of the level 3 COVID-19 alert in May,” she said.
Hotels and restaurants added about 13,000 more employees to their payrolls, while non-school educational, social welfare and health-related facilities each hired about 4,000 more workers, she added.
The accession rate — the number of new employees added to payrolls — picked up 0.24 percentage points to 3.04 percent, while the exit rate edged up 0.41 percentage points to 2.68 percent, the report showed.
The government has maintained some restrictions, such as keeping night clubs, dance halls and entertainment venues where people cannot maintain social distancing closed, despite only two local infections being reported this month.
Meanwhile, an uptick in wages also lent support to a recovery in the job market.
The nation’s average take-home pay grew 0.76 percent to NT$43,227 (US$1,536) in August, the report showed.
The pace of the increase is the fastest since 2008, Chen said, after hotels and restaurants raised employees’ compensation by 5.42 percent, leisure and entertainment businesses hiked wages by 5 percent, and other service providers raised wages by 3.31 percent on average.
However, total monthly wages including overtime and commission-based income declined 7.58 percent month-on-month to NT$51,169 in August after electronic component suppliers issued mid-year bonuses in July, pushing up the comparison base, the report showed.
Manufacturers of notebook computers and optical devices chose to pay mid-year bonuses in August, increasing their employees’ monthly wages by 19.06 percent, it showed.
In the first eight months of the year, average take-home pay in the nation increased 1.78 percent year-on-year to NT$42,990, while total compensation grew 2.41 percent to NT$57,579, the report showed.
The real gain in total wages stood at 0.15 percent after factoring in inflation, it showed.
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