An economist based in the Philippines has attributed the decline in unemployment to the continued growth of labor-intensive industries, including the BPO sector. According to Rizal Commercial Banking Corp. (RCBC) economist Michael L. Ricafort, the dip in unemployment figures was widely expected, owing to industries that have been bringing demand for more workers. Aside from BPO, these sectors include retail, real estate, construction, manufacturing, and tourism. Based on the latest official statistics, there was a decline in the country’s unemployment rate and under-employment rates in January. Nevertheless, there was also a drop in the number of employed Filipinos, even as the ranks of the unemployed went down. Experts said this may be attributed to the decline in the participation rate, which indicates that more Filipinos have left the labor force.
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