The unemployment rate stood at 4.08 percent last month, up 0.06 percentage points from the previous month and up 0.18 percentage points from the year-earlier level, the Directorate-General of Budget, Accounting and Statistics (DGBAS) said yesterday.
After seasonal adjustments, the unemployment rate was 3.95 percent, it said.
The number of unemployed reached 480,000 last month, up 8,000 from a month earlier and an increase of 24,000 from a year earlier, it said.
The spike in the unemployment rate was the result of an increase in first-time jobseekers due to the graduation season and a rise in part-time jobseekers, Census Department Deputy Director Pan Ning-hsin (潘寧馨) said.
The DGBAS numbers showed that the first-time jobseekers rose by 5,000 from July, and the number of those who lost their jobs due to business downsizing or closures rose by 1,000.
The number of those who were unhappy with their jobs and quit rose by 1,000, as did the number of people who lost their jobs because their temporary contracts expired.
National Development Council Minister Chen Tain-jy (陳添枝) said the rising jobless rate was not unusual during graduation season.
As the unemployment rate is a lagging economic indicator, it takes time for the job market to show signs of improvement, he added.
The latest data showed that the jobless rate last month among the 20 to 24 age group hit 13.43 percent, up 0.38 percentage points from July, but fell 0.21 percentage points from a year earlier, while the unemployment rate among the 25-29 age bracket reached 6.98 percent, up 0.13 percentage points month-on-month and also up 0.27 percentage points year-on-year, the DGBAS said.
The jobless rate among those with a university degree or higher stood at 5.11 percent, up 0.11 percentage points from a month earlier and also up 0.04 percentage points from a year earlier, the agency said.
In the first eight months of this year, the jobless rate averaged at 3.93 percent, up 0.2 percentage points from a year earlier.
The average nominal regular monthly wage in the first seven months of the year rose 1.36 percent from a year earlier to NT$39,118, the highest level compared with the same periods in the past, the DGBAS said.
However, the average monthly nominal wage, which comprise regular salaries and non-regular salaries such as bonuses and overtime pay, fell 0.06 percent year-on-year to NT$51,429 in the first seven months, the DGBAS said, citing smaller bonus payouts by employers at a time when the economy was slowing down.
After inflationary adjustments, the average monthly real wage fell 1.53 percent to NT$49,200 over the period, while the average monthly real regular wage during the same period also fell 0.13 percent year-on-year to NT$37,423.