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Stats SA tries to regain trust on unemployment numbers, but says SA is 'gatvol'

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Job seekers wait for casual work offers from passing motorists in Joburg South.
Job seekers wait for casual work offers from passing motorists in Joburg South.
Siphiwe Sibeko/Gallo Images

The response rate to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey (QLFS), released on Tuesday, has improved but remains very low in Gauteng, indicating that Statistics SA has not yet solved its data collection problem. 

A low response rate means that results must be imputed, increasing the potential for bias in the sample. Many economists have begun to question the accuracy of employment numbers.

The survey, a snapshot of the first quarter of 2022, showed that the unemployment rate had edged down slightly, falling by 0.8 of a percentage point to 34.5%. The number of jobs in the economy rose by 370 000, although some may be temporary government employment. 

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