This is an archived release.
Continued rise in employment
The number of employed rose by 23 000 from October 2007 to January 2008. The unemployment rate was 2.3 per cent in January.
Adjusted for seasonal variations, the Labour Force Survey (LFS) shows that the number of employed increased by 23 000 or 0.9 per cent from October (as measured by the average of the three months from September to November) to January (as measured by the average of the three months from December to February). Employment increased throughout 2007, and this continued in the beginning of 2008.
Unemployment nearly unchanged
The unemployment rate stood at 2.3 per cent of the labour force in January (as measured by the average of the three months from December to February), down from 2.5 per cent in October (as measured by the average of the three months from September to November). The 0.2 percentage points decrease (4 000 people) is inside the error margin of the LFS. Seasonally adjusted figures for people registered unemployed and on government measures to promote employment with the Labour and Welfare Organisation (NAV) showed a decrease in employment of 2 000 in the same period. With the continued rise in employment and low unemployment, the labour market remained tight in the beginning of 2008.
From October (as measured by the average of the three months from September to November) to January (as measured by the average of the three months from December to February) the average number of man-weeks (37.5 hours) worked each week decreased by 5 000 adjusted for seasonal variations. This is inside the error margin of the LFS.
Unemployment down in many countries, up in the US
There was a decrease in unemployment in many countries during the period from October 2007 to January 2008, including Sweden, France and Germany. In the US, however, unemployment rose. All figures refer to seasonally adjusted data from Eurostat .
Employment and unemployment figures include permanent residents
The LFS only includes persons who are registered as residents in the population register. Persons working in Norway, but who are not registered as permanent residents or who are planning to stay for less than six months, are not included in the number of employed in the LFS. Some of these will later become registered residents and then be included in the population covered by the LFS. Statistics Norway publishes separate figures for registered non-residents once a year. See short-term immigrants .
The purpose of making adjustments for seasonal variations is to describe the development over the last year and provide estimates of change between the last two three-month periods, corrected for normal seasonal variations. In order to reduce uncertainty, the published series are three-month moving averages of the seasonally adjusted figures. For instance, the figures for February represent the average of the estimates for January, February and March.
Quarterly LFS figures, not seasonally adjusted, are presented in a separate article .