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Four out of 10 young job seekers vie for public service: data

All News 15:35 July 21, 2016

SEJONG, July 21 (Yonhap) -- Four out of 10 college graduates were preparing for the public service entrance examinations as more youngsters prefer stable jobs amid the prolonged economic slowdown, data showed Thursday.

Among 652,000 job seekers aged between 15 and 29, 39.3 percent of them were preparing for the civil service entrance exam in May, adding 4.4 percentage points from a year ago, Statistics Korea said.

Those who had taken temporary absence from school accounted for 44.6 percent as of May, the highest level since the data were first compiled in 2007.

It took about four years and three months for college students to graduate school, about one month extended from a year ago. The average period has broken records every year since 2012.

Out of 3.31 million graduates who are employed, 40.7 percent had jobs in the service industry, trailed by those in retail, food and accommodation with 26 percent and the manufacturing sector with 18.7 percent.

Nearly half of the job seekers took less than six months to find employment, while 37 percent found jobs within three years. Seventeen percent idled more than three years before being hired.

Fifty-eight percent of young workers landed in regular positions for their first job, but 22.2 percent were employed for terms less than one year and 12.5 percent started with part-time jobs.

The elderly population aged between 55 and 79 also faced a tight job market in Asia's fourth-largest economy.

The economic participation rate of the 12.39 million seniors in the country ticked down 0.1 percentage point on-year to 55.1 percent, and their employment rate edged down 0.2 percentage point to 53.7 percent during the period, the statistics office said.

It is the first time that the senior employment rate slipped on an annual basis since 2009.

Those aged between 55 and 64 worked in one job for nearly 15 years on average, while three out of 10 stayed in one job for over 30 years.

They quit jobs just shy of 50 years old on average, and only half of them managed to get a second job and sticking to it until now.

Among the elderly population, 7.58 million, or 61.2 percent, said they want to have a job in the future.

A majority of them said they were searching for jobs to cover living costs, while 35 percent wanted to have jobs for the sheer joy of work.

ejkim@yna.co.kr
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