The Jamaican economy created nearly 29,000 jobs in the quarter ending January, and women were the main beneficiaries. But men still command most of the jobs in the overall economy.
In the latest Labour Force Survey released Tuesday by the Statistical Institute of Jamaica, jobs for men grew by 9,500 to 673,000, but women accounted for twice that at 19,100. The employed female labour force is now estimated at 559,200.
The total employed labour force rose by 28,600 to 1,232,700, up two per cent relative to the levels seen in January 2018. The unemployment rate fell to 8.0 per cent from 9.6 per cent a year ago.
The sector covering Real Estate, Renting and Business Activities had the largest increase in employment, up 9,600, or 11.7 per cent, to 91,600 jobs.
Activities classified within real estate renting and business include legal, accounting, tax consultancy, market research, business management consultancy, bill payment and remittance services and telemarketing.
The second-largest increase was in Hotels and Restaurant Services, which added 8,000 workers. The segment which includes short-stay visitors in hotels, guest houses and villas also incorporates restaurants, bars and canteens.
The industry with the most significant decline – down 11,000, or 5.8 per cent – was agriculture, forestry and fishing. The sector now accounts for 188,700 jobs.
Statin Director General Carol Coy said agriculture employed the largest number of males, and accordingly, there was a decline in jobs for men in that grouping.
The largest increase in female employment was in real estate, 6,500; and hotels and restaurants, 6,400.
The male unemployment rate fell to 6.1 per cent in the January survey and to 10.3 per cent for women.