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Report: ​Labour Market 2020
Released on:16/3/2021 10:00 AM
In 4Q 2020, Singapore’s labour market showed a broad improvement.​​

1. The contraction in total employment moderated in 4Q 2020. Resident employment rose for the second consecutive quarter, while non-resident employment continued to decline

2. Unemployment rates fell in the last two months of 2020, and this continued in January 2021.

3. Retrenchments declined for the first time in 4Q 2020, after five consecutive quarters of increases. The re-entry rate among retrenched residents rose for the first time in 2020.

4. The number of job vacancies rose in December 2020 for the second consecutive quarter. Along with the decrease in unemployed persons, the job vacancies to unemployed persons ratio improved.

For the full year of 2020, government measures have helped to cushion the impact of COVID-19 on the labour market.


1. Resident employment rebounded to slightly above pre-COVID levels by the end of 2020. The contraction in total employment was solely attributed to non-residents.

2. Even though the annual average unemployment rates rose, they did not exceed the levels recorded in past recessionary periods of SARS (2003) and the Global Financial Crisis (2009).

3. While retrenchments more than doubled from 2019, the workforce was less vulnerable to retrenchment compared to previous recessions. Residents also had a lower incidence of retrenchment than non-residents.

For more key findings, please refer to the Executive Summary​ of the report.