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S. Korean Small Businesses Lay Off Staff as Pandemic Bites Deeper

#Hot Issues of the Week l 2020-09-13



The fourth supplementary budget and the relief subsidy come as South Korea saw the number of jobs drop for the sixth consecutive month in August amid the economic fallout of the coronavirus pandemic.

According to Statistics Korea on Wednesday, the number of employed people dropped to around 27-point-08 million last month, down by 274-thousand from a year earlier.  The drop in employment was most notable in the hospitality industry.

"Employment has continued to fall for the sixth month after drastically falling in April. This is the longest consecutive fall in eleven years since the eight month-long drop from January to August in 2009 during the global financial crisis."

"Due to the prolonged COVID-19 outbreak, the number of employment continues to fall in lodging, restaurant and education, as well as other personal service areas. Wholesale and retail sectors also lost jobs, mainly on the retail side."

The worst is yet to be fully reflected in employment stats as the surge in COVID-19 infections last month and the impact of the stricter social distancing regulations have not been factored in.

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