CH: Employment

Tue Feb 24 02:15:00 CST 2015

Actual Previous
Level change (000) Q/Q 18,000 9,000
Level change (000) Y/Y 42,000 31,000

Employment expanded a quarterly 18,000 in October-December or nearly double the rate achieved in the previous period. Compared with the fourth quarter of 2013, the number of people in work was up 42,000 following a 31,000 increase last time.

The quarterly rise was wholly attributable to the service sector where headcount was up 0.6 percent after a 0.7 percent gain in the third quarter. By contrast, goods producing industries registered no change for a second successive period.

The pick-up in employment growth last quarter is unlikely to last as the negative effects of January's sharp appreciation of the CHF begin to be felt in many areas of the Swiss economy. Indeed, vacancies fell a further 0.4 percent having already declined in both the second and third quarters.

Employment data counts the number of paid employees working part-time or full-time in the nation's business and government establishments. The data include employee jobs, self-employed jobs, apprentices and business owners. The definition covers all employment units in which a minimum of 20 hours per week are accomplished.

The employment data give a comprehensive report on how many people have jobs. These numbers are the best way to gauge the current state as well as the future direction of the economy. Employment data are categorized by sectors. This sector data can go a long way in helping investors determine in which economic sectors they intend to invest. By tracking the jobs data, investors can sense the degree of tightness in the job market. If employment is tight it is a good bet that interest rates will rise and bond and stock prices will fall. In contrast, when job growth is slow or negative, then interest rates are likely to decline - boosting up bond and stock prices in the process.