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36% of recent college graduates out of work

The number of unemployed fresh college graduates increased by 0.2 percent in April from a year earlier despite a drop in the overall jobless rate, Statistics Korea said Wednesday.

Some 63.6 percent of college graduates in their twenties were part of the workforce, posting a 0.3 percent drop from a month earlier, indicating a persistent structural mismatch between the reality of the job market and expectations of highly educated young people.

The overall jobless rate inched down 0.1 percent to 3.7 percent from same time last year with continued new hiring in the private sector. The figure is down from 4.3 percent in March.

Twenty-something graduates was the only group that posted either a further loss of jobs or higher unemployment rate. A total of 3,654,000 in the group had jobs as of July, showing a 2.7 percent drop.

The number of those who founds jobs in the same category stood at 3,832,000 in April, which is 73,000 fewer than the number from April last year, 3,905,000.

The jobs added in the overall job market were led by the private sector.

“Despite a decline in the public administrative sector, health and social welfare, manufacturing and other non-public administrative areas continued to see robust (job) growth thanks to expanded production fueled by strong exports,” the report said.

The health and social welfare service sector added 179,000 jobs last month, driving on-year job growth, while manufacturers added 116,000 positions, the report showed.

By Cynthia J. Kim (cynthiak@heraldcorp.com)
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