Labor force survey shows: Direct link between education and unemployment


St. Maarten – There is a direct link between unemployment and education levels. This appears from a labor force survey by the Department of Statistics amount 1,038 households. The highest levels of unemployment are found among citizens with primary school education (11.4 percent) and secondary 1 (11.9) and secondary 2 (4.4 percent).

Among higher educated citizens the unemployment rate is significantly lower, the survey found. Only 2.6 percent of citizens with a tertiary 1 education and 2.7 percent of those with a tertiary 2 education are unemployed. In the group of higher educated citizen, around 84 percent has a job, while this percentage for citizens with primary school is 60.1 percent and for those with secondary education between 69.4 and 78.2 percent.

The numbers support the idea that the counterpart policy that the previous government said it was pursuing, targets the wrong group in the job market. The pain in the market is at the bottom, not at the top.

The survey furthermore found that household income has frozen or declined for those earning more than 5,001 guilders per month, the group that earned more than 10,000 guilders a month declined even with 4.3 percent.

On the other end of the spectrum, the households earning up to 1,000 guilders a month increased from 13.2 to 13.6 percent, the group earning between 1,001 and 2,000 guilders expanded from 19;.1 to 22.6 percent and the group in the category 2,001 to 3,000 guilders bumped it up 7.8 percent – from 16.6 to 24.4 percent.

The survey found that, on a labor force of 2, 1071 people, unemployment overall declined from 13.2 to 11.9 percent, but that decrease is mainly – if not only due, to women joining the active job market.

Of the 1,103 young men in the labor force (aged between 15 and 24) the unemployment  number was 311 in 2013, the year when the survey was completed – 30 more than in 2011 Percentagewise, the unemployment in this group was 29 percent, compared to 27.9 percent in 2011.

For men between 25 and 44 years of age unemployment also went up: 349 in 2011 (on a total of 4,494 – 7.76 percent) versus 397 in 2013 when this group had expanded to 5,072 (7.82 percent).

The age group over 45 saw a minuscule increase in unemployment, from 348 to 360, while the labor force in this category shot up from 4,138 to 4,622. Percentage wise unemployment decreased from 8.4 to 7.8 percent.

The bright side of the statistics came from the women in the labor force. In the 15-24 age category unemployment went down from 294 to 249 (from 27.4 to 23.5 percent). There was an even stronger decline in unemployment among women aged 25-44: from 598 to 325 (from 12.3 to 6.1 percent). Among older women (45 and above) unemployment also went down: from 358 to 293 (from 9.6 to 7.5 percent).

The total male labor force was 10,797 in 2013 and 1,068 of them were without a job (9.9 percent); for women these numbers were 10,276 and 867 (8.4 percent).

However, there are 4,456 economically inactive women, versus 3.026 economically inactive men.

Source: Today SXM Labor force survey shows: Direct link between education and unemployment