South Korea's unemployment rate inches up in December

South Korea's unemployment rate inched up in December from the previous month, although the number of people in work grew by more than half a million from a year earlier. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS
South Korea's unemployment rate inched up in December from the previous month, although the number of people in work grew by more than half a million from a year earlier. -- FILE PHOTO: REUTERS

SEOUL (AFP) - South Korea's unemployment rate inched up in December from the previous month, although the number of people in work grew by more than half a million from a year earlier.

The seasonally adjusted jobless rate stood at 3.0 per cent last month, compared to 2.9 per cent in November, the state agency Statistics Korea said on Wednesday.

The total number of employed people in December stood at 24.96 million, up 560,000 from a year earlier, the agency said.

The health and social welfare service sector added 165,000 positions from December 2012, while the number of people employed in the manufacturing sector grew by 82,000.

The farming and fisheries sector, however, shed 27,000 jobs over the same period.

The statistics were less bright for younger South Koreans.

The jobless rate among those aged 15-29 jumped to 8.5 per cent in December from 7.5 per cent in November.