Estonia's unemployment rate fell to 5.7 percent in the third quarter of 2021, data from Statistics Estonia shows. The number of people without work dropped by 7,400 to 39,900.
The labour force participation rate was 71.5 percent, the employment rate was 67.4 percent, and the unemployment rate was 5.7 percent - the lowest this year.
In the third quarter (July, August and September), there were 39,900 unemployed persons, which is 7,400 persons less compared to the previous quarter.
There were 23,100 unemployed men and 16,800 unemployed women, and a half of them have been unemployed for less than six months.
Katriin Põlluäär, analyst at Statistics Estonia, said that unemployment is steadily moving towards the pre-crisis levels.
"During the pandemic last year, unemployment rose by around 20,000 persons, but the last quarters have shown a steady decrease in unemployment numbers. There is still progress to make to reach the pre-pandemic level when the unemployment rate fluctuated between four to five percent, but we are close to it. Of course, an unknown factor is the effect of the coronavirus in the coming months," added Põlluäär.
"The last time that the rate was so low was in the first quarter of last year , when it was 5.1 percent. However, a year ago, the unemployment rate was 7.6 percent," Põlluäär said.
Employed persons in the age group 15–74 numbered 657,600 in the third quarter.
"This figure also shows movement towards the pre-crisis situation. Last year, at the same time, there were 652,000 employed persons," she said.
In the third quarter, 87 percent of the employed worked full-time. There were 86,000 persons who worked part-time. More than a half, i.e. 68 percent, of part-time workers were women.
In the third quarter, the number of underemployed persons, i.e. persons who work part-time but would like to work more and are available for additional work within two weeks, was 4,900, which is the lowest number in recent years.
Inactive persons on the labour market totalled 278,300. The main reasons for inactivity were retirement, studies and illness or disability.
Editor: Helen Wright