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South African Jobless Rate Rises to 27.6%, Near 15-Year High

  • Construction industry cut 142,000 positions in first quarter
  • Financial-services firms reduced employment by 94,000 people
Construction workers stand on scaffolding in Johannesburg.
Construction workers stand on scaffolding in Johannesburg.

Photographer: Waldo Swiegers/Bloomberg

Updated on

South Africa’s unemployment rate climbed in the first quarter of 2019 as construction and financial-services firms cut positions.

The unemployment rate rose to 27.6% from 27.1% in the three months through December, Statistics South Africa said in report released Tuesday in the capital, Pretoria. The median estimate of six economists surveyed by Bloomberg was 27.4%.