October: unemployment rate expanded to 9.6% - official unemployment rate remained at 3.4%

Posted on Nov 20, 2023 by Ifi Reporter

In October, Israel's official unemployment rate remained seemingly stable at 3.4%, but the reality is far more dire as the nation grapples with the consequences of the ongoing war. The Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) revealed today that when factoring in those on unpaid leave and receiving unemployment benefits, the actual number of unemployed workers skyrocketed to approximately 430,000, reflecting an expanded unemployment rate of 9.6%.

The data, released on Monday, exposes the stark impact of the conflict on the country's workforce. Economic reasons accounted for a staggering 30.4% of additional temporary absences in October, a sharp rise from 5.5% in September. Reserves and other reasons also saw significant increases, reaching 15.2% and 37.5%, respectively.

Breaking down the figures by gender, men experienced a 29% absence rate due to economic reasons (compared to 7.7% in September), 26.1% for reserves, and 33.8% for other reasons. Meanwhile, women faced a 31.8% absence rate for economic reasons (up from 4.3% in September), 4% for reserves, and 41.4% for other reasons.

The employment rate, representing the percentage of the employed in the total population, dropped to 60.5% in October, down from 61.3% the previous month. However, when excluding those temporarily absent from work for economic reasons, the employment rate plummeted to 56.5%, revealing the true impact of the war on the workforce.

With an expanded unemployment rate of 9.6% and a broader measure reaching 10.4% in October, Israel faces a mounting economic challenge as the conflict disrupts normalcy and prompts widespread workforce disruptions.


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