Estimates from the Icelandic Labour Force Survey show that 201,600 persons aged 16 to 74 years of age belonged to the labour force in December 2018, - setting the activity rate at 79.6% (±2.5). Thereof, 198,800 (±6,500) persons were employed and 2,800 (±1,800) persons were unemployed. The proportion of the population who were employed was 78.5% (±2.6), while the proportion of unemployed persons of those who are active was 1.4% (±0.9).

Comparison between December 2017 and 2018 shows that the number of people active in the labour force decreased slightly, or by 100 persons and that its proportion of the population decreased 2.2 percentage points. The number of employed persons increased by 3,200, while its proportion of the population decreased by 0.8 percentage points. The number of those who are unemployed decreased by 3,300 in December 2018 compared to the December 2017 when they were 6,100 or 3.0% of the labour force. In total, there were 51,700 inactive persons in the population in December 2018, which is an increase from December 2017 when they were 44,900.

flæðirit-en-jan19 Figures may not add up because of rounding. CI (95%) Unemployment rate: Total ±0.9; males ±1.3; females ±1.2.

Seasonally adjusted unemployment was 3.6% in December 2018
Changes in the Icelandic labour market display a seasonal pattern as can be seen in the accompanying figures. The seasonally adjusted estimate of the number of people in the labour force was 203,800 in December 2018. This corresponds to an 80.6% activity rate which is 1.6 percentage points lower than in November. The seasonally adjusted number of unemployed persons in December 2018 was estimated to be 3,400 or 1.7%, a decrease by 0.1 percentage points from November. The seasonally adjusted employment rate was 79.2% in December 2018, which is a 0.1 percentage points decrease since November. The trend for seasonally adjusted data in the last 12 months shows that activity rate decreased by 0.3 percentage points, while employment rate increased by 0.1 percentage points, and the rate of unemployment decreased by 0.5 percentage points.

Figure 1graf1

Figure 2graf2

Figure 3graf3

Figure 4graf4

Table 1. Labour market in December Original
  2010 2011 2012
CI CI CI
  2016 (±95%) 2017 (±95%) 2018 (±95%)
Total 1674 years
Activity rate 83.0 2,2 81.8 2,6 79.6 2,5
Employment rate 80.8 2,3 79.3 2,8 78.5 2,6
Unemployment rate 2.6 1,1 3.0 1,4 1.4 0,9
Hours of work 37.7 1,2 37.6 1,5 36.2 1,3
Labour force 197,000 5,100 201,700 6,400 201,600 6,300
Employed 191,900 5,500 195,600 6,800 198,800 6,500
Unemployed 5,100 2,200 6,100 2,900 2,800 1,800
Inactive 40,400 5,100 44,900 6,400 51,700 6,300
Est. population 237,300 . 246,600 . 253,300 .

Table 2. Labour market last 6 months seasonal adjustment
 Jul-18Aug-18Sep-18Oct-18Nov-18Dec-18
Total 1674 years
Activity rate 81.6 81.6 81.6 81.7 82.2 80.6
Employment rate 78.7 79.5 80.2 79.3 79.3 79.2
Unemployment rate 3.6 2.6 1.7 3.1 3.5 1.7
Hours of work 39.8 40.9 38.6 39.7 38.8 38.9
Labour force 204,400 204,300 204,900 206,600 208,600 203,800
Employed 197,100 198,900 201,300 200,300 201,200 200,400
Unemployed 7,300 5,400 3,600 6,300 7,400 3,400
Inactive 46,000 45,900 46,200 46,100 45,000 49,100
Est. population 250,400 250,300 251,100 252,800 253,600 252,900

Table 3. Labour market last 6 months seasonal adjustment trend
 Jul-18Aug-18Sep-18Oct-18Nov-18Dec-18
Total 1674 years
Activity rate 81.8 81.8 81.8 81.8 81.7 81.7
Employment rate 79.5 79.6 79.6 79.6 79.6 79.7
Unemployment rate 2.7 2.7 2.6 2.6 2.6 2.5
Hours of work 39.8 39.8 39.6 39.4 39.4 39.4
Labour force 203,900 204,300 204,800 205,200 205,500 205,700
Employed 198,300 198,800 199,400 199,900 200,200 200,500
Unemployed 5,600 5,500 5,400 5,300 5,300 5,200
Inactive 45,500 45,600 45,700 45,800 45,900 46,000
Est. population 249,400 249,900 250,500 251,000 251,400 251,700
About the data
December 2018 is divided into four weeks, from December 3rd to December 30th. The total sample size for the Labour Force Survey in December was 1,543 persons, 16–74 years old who were randomly selected from the registered population. When individuals out of scope had been removed from the sample, the net sample was 1,509 persons. In total, the number of answers was 973 individuals corresponding to a response rate of 64.5%.

It should be noted that all numbers are rounded to the nearest hundred, and results are weighted by sex and age groups.

Statistics