According to the Icelandic Labour Force Survey the number of persons in the labour force in January 2017 was 193,100. Of those in the labour force 185,300 persons were employed and 7,900 persons were unemployed. The activity rate was 80.3%, the employment rate was 77.1% and the unemployment rate was 4.1%. Comparison between January 2016 and 2017 shows decrease in activity by 1.2 percentage points of the total population. Number of employed increased by 1,400 persons but the employment rate decreased up by 2.1 point. Number of unemployed increased by 2,600 persons and the unemployment rate was 1.3 points higher.

Figure 1. Labour force January 2017



Figures may not add up because of rounding.

Seasonally adjusted unemployment was 3.6% in January
The changes in the Icelandic labour market display a certain pattern as regards seasonality, as can be seen in the figures below. The seasonal adjustment estimates that in January 2017 the number of people in the labour force was 199,600, corresponding to 82.7% activity rate which is 1.3 percentage points lower than in December 2016. The number of unemployed persons, in January 2017, is estimated around 7,300 and has increased by 1,400 since December. The unemployment rate was 3.6% in January compared to 3% in December. According to the seasonal adjustment the employment rate was 79.7% in January. The trend for seasonally adjusted data in the last six months shows that the unemployment rate has stayed the same, but in the last 12 months it has decreased by 0.2 points. The employment rate has decreased by 0.3 points in the last six months but increased by 0.7 points in the last 12 months.


Implementation
January 2017 is divided into four weeks, from 2nd to 29th of January 2017. The total sample size was 1,203 persons, 16–74 years, randomly chosen from the Population Register. When those who had passed away and those who were living abroad had been deducted from the sample the net sample was 1,166 persons. In total the number of usable answers was 856 which correspond to 73.4% response rate. All figures have been weighted by sex and age groups. The confidence limit of the results on activity rate is ±2.6 points, employment rate is ±2.8 points and unemployment rate is ±1.5 point. Figures may not add up because of rounding. All numbers for the first two months in every quarter of the year are preliminary until the end of the quarter.

Table 1. Labour market in January - Original
    CI   CI   CI
  2015 (±95%) 2016 (±95%) 2017 (±95%)
Total 16-74 years            
Activity rate 80.1 2.2 81.5 2.4 80.3 2.6
Employment rate 76.7 2.3 79.2 2.6 77.1 2.8
Unemployment rate 4.3 1.3 2.8 1.2 4.1 1.5
Hours of work 38.0 1.2 39.2 1.3 39.2 1.2
Labour force 184,800 5,100 189,300 5,700 193,100 6,300
Employed 176,800 5,400 183,900 6,000 185,300 6,700
Unemployed 8,000 2,400 5,300 2,400 7,900 3,000
Inactive 45,800 5,100 42,900 5,700 47,200 6,300
Est. population 230,600 232,100 240,400
Table 2. Labour market last 6 months - Seasonal adjustment
  Aug-16 Sep-16 Oct-16 Nov-16 Dec-16 Jan-17
Total 16-74 years            
Activity rate 84.0 84.1 83.3 84.5 84.0 82.7
Employment rate 81.4 81.3 80.9 82.0 81.5 79.7
Unemployment rate 3.1 3.3 2.9 3.0 3.0 3.6
Hours of work 39.8 40.5 40.1 40.1 40.2 40.5
Labour force 197,200 198,500 197,800 200,600 199,300 199,600
Employed 191,100 192,000 192,100 194,500 193,400 192,300
Unemployed 6,100 6,500 5,700 6,100 5,900 7,300
Inactive 37,600 37,600 39,700 36,700 37,900 41,600
Est. population 234,800 236,100 237,500 237,300 237,200 241,200
Table 3. Labour market last 6 months - Seasonal adjustment trend
  Aug-16 Sep-16 Oct-16 Nov-16 Dec-16 Jan-17
Total 16-74 years            
Activity rate 83.7 83.8 83.8 83.7 83.5 83.4
Employment rate 81.2 81.2 81.2 81.2 81.0 80.9
Unemployment rate 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0 3.0
Hours of work 40.1 40.1 40.2 40.2 40.2 40.2
Labour force 197,200 198,000 198,600 199,000 199,000 198,800
Employed 191,300 192,000 192,600 193,000 193,000 192,800
Unemployed 5,900 6,000 6,000 6,000 6,000 6,000
Inactive 38,400 38,400 38,500 38,800 39,200 39,500
Est. population 235,700 236,400 237,100 237,800 238,200 238,300

Statistics