Increasing female employment
Labour market and earnings;Labour market and earnings;Immigration and immigrants
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Labour force surveyQ4 2002



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Increasing female employment

The unemployment increased and the employment showed signs of stagnation from the third to the fourth quarter of 2002 shows seasonal adjusted figures from the Labour Force Surveys (LFS) (see separate article ). The difference between women and men when it comes to labour force participation is decreasing.

Workforce, employed and man-weeks worked. Seasonally adjusted figures in thousands.

The gap between males and females concerning the labour force participation is still diminishing. In 2002 70 per cent of the females and 77 per cent of the males were economically active, a difference of 7 percentage points. Ten years ago the difference was 12 percentage points, and 23 twenty years ago, according to the Labour Force Surveys.

During the last four years the activity rate has decreased with one percentage point for males, while it has increased with one and a half percentage point for females. From the fourth quarter 2001 to the fourth quarter 2002 there has been a small decline in both the female and the male activity rate totally. For males the unemployment is increasing and the employment decreasing.

Unemployment increased

A total of 87 000 persons were unemployed in the fourth quarter of 2002, accounting for 3.7 per cent of the labour force, compared with 3.3 per cent the same quarter the previous year.

The rate of long-term unemployment increased from 18 to 22 per cent last year. Long-term unemployed are those who have been continuously unemployed for more than six months at the time of the survey.

There were 80 000 underemployed in the fourth quarter of 2002, i.e. part-time employed seeking more work. As a percentage of all part-time employed, this corresponds to 13.3 per cent, compared with 11.8 per cent the same quarter 2001.

Unemployed (Labour Force Survey - LFS), registered unemployed and registered employed + public sector job creation programmes. Seasonally adjusted figures in thousands.

More employees in health and social work

Compared with the fourth quarter of 2001, there was increased employment within health and social work. Agriculture and business activities, on the other hand, showed a decline in employment.

Unemployment increased in EU and OECD

While the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Norway increased from 3.8 per cent in August to 4.1 per cent in November 2002, it increased from 7.6 to 7.7 per cent as an average in the EU. The rate in the OECD-countries increased from 6.9 to 7.0. In November 2002 the unemployment rate was 6.0 in USA (5.7 in August 2002), 5.0 in Sweden (4.7 in August), and 8.9 in Finland (9.2 in August). This is according to figures from OECD .

Temporary employment

There were 198 000 temporary employed in the fourth quarter of 2002, approximately the same amount of temporary employed people in the same period the previous year . This corresponds to 9.4 per cent of all employees. The rate of temporary employment was highest in health and social work, hotels and restaurants and in education, lowest in manufacturing and construction.