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Johannesburg – The Quarterly Employment Statistics for December show that 18 000 more people had jobs than in the September quarter.

Statistics SA released the survey on Friday, and noted employment now stands at 9.69 million South Africans.

This survey is different to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey, which tracks unemployment and showed that, for the last quarter of 2017, the unemployment rate declined to 26.5 percent, which represented a 0.6 percentage point decline. The Labour Force Survey looks at households, while Employment Statistics is based on what enterprises report.

Stats SA says the gain in employment in the December quarter was largely due to gains in the trade, business services and manufacturing sectors.

However there were decreases in community services, construction, mining and quarrying and transport.

It says mining continued to lose jobs after remaining unchanged in previous two quarter 

Compared to the same period last year, employment increased by 90 000 or 0.9 percent year-on-year between December 2015 and December 2016.

Read also: Unemployment on the retreat

These increases were reported by trade, business services, community services, construction and manufacturing.

Stats SA says the industries that reported annual decreases included transport and mining and quarrying.

Meanwhile, gross earnings paid to employees increased by R35.6 billion to R607.2 billion in December. This, it explains was mainly due to increases in trade, business services, community services, manufacturing, transport, mining and quarrying, and construction industries.

Compared to the same period last year, gross earnings increased by R37.8 billion year-on-year.

The survey results show that quarter-to-quarter, average monthly earnings paid to employees increased by 2.6 percent to R18 502 in November 2016. This is an increase of 6.8 percent compared to the same period of the previous year.