MANILA - (UPDATE) Some 2.76 million Filipinos were jobless in January, as the country's unemployment rate rose, official data released Tuesday showed.
Unemployment rose to 6.6 percent in January from 4.7 percent in October, when 2.04 million were jobless, the Philippine Statistics Agency said.
Damage from typhoons Nina and Auring, which hit in December and January, respectively, accounted form 882,000 or roughly two-thirds of the employment losses, Economic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia said.
"The government must focus interventions to diversify the sources of income of our workers in the agriculture sector, increase labor participation of women, and address youth unemployment and underutilization," Pernia said in a statement.
There were 39.3 million people employed as of January, down from nearly 41.7 million in October, data showed. The country has a population of 100 million.
The number of underemployed Filipinos dropped to 6.39 million in January from 7.51 million in October, data showed.
About 58.5 percent of the underemployed worked for less than 40 hours a week. Most of the underemployed worked in the services and agriculture sectors. -- with reports from Reuters