Employment Rate in October 2016 is Estimated at 95.3 Percent

Reference Number: 2016-170
Release Date: December 13, 2016

Results from the October 2016 Labor Force Survey (LFS)



October 2016a/

October 2015

Population 15 years and over (in 000)



Labor Force Participation Rate (%)



Employment Rate (%)



Unemployment Rate (%)



Underemployment Rate (%)



a/ Estimates for October 2016 are preliminary and may change.

The employment rate in October 2016 was estimated at 95.3 percent.  Five regions, namely, CALABARZON (93.8%), National Capital Region (NCR) (94.1%), Central Luzon (94.3%), Ilocos Region (94.6%), and Central Visayas (94.9%) had employment rates lower than the national figure (Table 4).  The labor force participation rate (LFPR) in October 2016 was estimated at 63.6 percent given the labor force population of 68.7 million.  The labor force population consists of the employed and the unemployed 15 years old and over.

Workers were grouped into three broad sectors, namely, agriculture, industry and services sector.  Workers in the services sector comprised the largest proportion of the population who are employed.  These workers made up 54.9 percent of the total employed in October 2016 (Table 1).   Among them, those engaged in wholesale and retail trade or in the repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles accounted for the largest percentage (35.3%) of workers in the services sector (Table 2).
Workers in the agriculture sector comprised the second largest group making up 27.9 percent of the total employed in October 2016, while workers in the industry sector made up the smallest group registering 17.2 percent of the total employed.  The October 2016 LFS results also showed that in the industry sector, workers in the construction subsector made up the largest group, accounting for 47.5 percent of workers in this sector, and those in manufacturing, the second largest group, making up 47.4 percent (Tables 1 and 2).
Among the occupation groups, workers in the elementary occupations remained the largest group making up 27.3 percent of the total employed in October 2016 (Table 1).  Managers comprised the second largest occupation group (16.6%), followed by service and sales workers (15.2%), and skilled agricultural, forestry, and fishery workers (13.1%).
Employed persons fall into any of these categories: (1) wage and salary workers, (2) self-employed workers without any paid employee, (3) employers in own family-operated farm or business, and (4) unpaid family workers.  Wage and salary workers are those who work for private households, private establishments, government or government-controlled corporations, and those who work with pay in own family-operated farm or business.  In October 2016, the wage and salary workers made up 60.8 percent of the total employed, with those working in private establishments continuing to account for the largest share (Table 1).  They made up 47.8 percent of the total employed in October 2016.  The second largest class of workers were the self-employed making up 27.5 percent of the total employed in October 2016.  Unpaid family workers accounted for 8.6 percent of the total employed.
Employed persons are classified as either full-time workers or part-time workers.  Full-time workers refer to those who worked for 40 hours or more during the reference week, while those who worked for less than 40 hours were considered part-time workers.  Of the total employed persons in October 2016, 65.9 percent were full-time workers, while 33.3 percent were part-time workers (Table 2).  In this round of LFS, workers worked 41.7 hours per week, on average.
By definition, employed persons who express the desire to have additional hours of work in their present job, or to have additional job, or to have a new job with longer working hours are considered underemployed.  In October 2016, the underemployment rate, which is the percentage of the underemployed to the total employed, was estimated at 18.0 percent (Table 4).
Underemployed persons who work for less than 40 hours in a week are called visibly underemployed persons.  They accounted for 53.7 percent of the total underemployed in October 2016  (Table 3).  By  comparison, the  underemployed persons  who  worked  for  40 hours or more in a week made up 45.1 percent.  By sector, 43.5 percent of the underemployed worked in the services sector, while 39.1 percent were in the agriculture sector.  Those in the industry sector accounted for 17.3 percent (Table 3).
The unemployment rate in October 2016 was estimated at 4.7 percent.  Among the regions, CALABARZON (6.2%), National Capital Region (NCR) (5.9%), Central Luzon (5.7%), Ilocos Region (5.4%), and Central Visayas (5.1%) were the regions with the highest unemployment rates (Table 4).
Among the unemployed persons in October 2016, 64.4 percent were males.  Of the total unemployed, the age group 15 to 24 years comprised 47.6 percent, while the age group 25 to 34, 30.1 percent.  By educational attainment, 20.5 percent of the unemployed were college graduates, 13.8 percent were college undergraduates, and 32.9 percent were high school graduates (Table 3). 
National Statistician and Civil Registrar General

Technical Notes


  • Starting April 2005, the new unemployment definition was adopted per NSCB Resolution Number 15 dated October 20, 2004.  As indicated in the said resolution, the unemployed include all persons who are 15 years and over as of their last birthday and are reported as: (1) without work and currently available for work and seeking work; or (2) without work and currently available for work but not seeking work for the following reasons:
1. Tired/believed no work available
2. Awaiting results of previous job application
3. Temporary illness/disability
4. Bad weather
5. Waiting for rehire/job recall
  • Starting January 2012 LFS, the codes for industry adopted the 2009 Philippine Standard Industrial Classification (PSIC).  Prior to this, codes for industry used the 1994 PSIC.
  • Question on vocational course was introduced in the January 2012 LFS questionnaire.
  • Starting April 2016 round, the Labor Force Survey (LFS) adopted the 2013 Master Sample Design, with a sample size of approximately 44,000 households. 
  • The 2012 Philippine Standard Occupational Classification (PSOC) was adopted starting April 2016.  The 1992 PSOC had been used prior to April 2016.
  • Starting with the April 2016 LFS round, the population projections based on the 2010 Census of Population and Housing (2010 CPH) was adopted to generate the labor force statistics.
  • Overseas Filipino Workers are not considered part of the labor force in the Philippines.  Hence, in the LFS, data on economic characteristics of household members who are overseas workers are not collected.  For the LFS reports, they are excluded in the estimation of the size of working population, that is, population aged 15 years and older, and in the estimation of the labor force.


Labor Force by Year


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Wilma A. Guillen
Income and Employment Statistics Division 
Social Sector Statistics Service
    +632 8376 2092