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Unemployment rate dips to 4.1% in 21-22

GS Paper 3

 Syllabus: Indian Economy and issues relating to Planning, Mobilization of Resources, Growth, Development and Employment


Source: BS

 Context: According to the latest annual Periodic Labour Force Survey (PLFS), released by the National Statistical Office (NSO), India’s unemployment rate dropped to a five-year low in July-June 2021-22 to 4.1%

About Key indicators
Launched by the NSO in 2017, to estimate the key employment and unemployment indicators –

●        For example, the Labour Force Participation Rate (LFPR), etc., in the short time interval of three months for the urban areas only in the Current Weekly Status (CWS).

●        In both usual status and CWS in both rural and urban areas annually.



NSO is the Statistics Wing of the Union Ministry of Statistics and Programme Implementation, which includes the Central Statistical Office (CSO), the Computer Center and the National Sample Survey Office (NSSO).



Prior to the PLFS, the NSSO (now known as NSO) used to bring out data based on household socio-economic surveys once in five years.

●        LFPR: Percentage of persons in the labour force (working or seeking work) in the population.

●        Worker Population Ratio (WPR): Percentage of employed persons in the population.

●        Unemployment Rate (UR): Percentage of persons unemployed among the persons in the labour force.

●        Activity Status:

○        Usual Status: Determined on the basis of the reference period of the last 365 days preceding the date of the survey.

○        CWS: Determined on the basis of a reference period of the last 7 days preceding the date of the survey.


Findings of the latest PLFS:



Annual survey (“usual status”):

  • UR declined for the 4th consecutive year since it was launched in April 2017.
  • The UR for rural women (2.1%) was lower than for rural men (3.8%) in 2021-22, whereas in urban areas, the rate was high for females (7.9%) as compared to males (5.8%).
  • The LFPR had increased significantly in the last five years from 37.5% in 2018-19 to 55.2% in 2021-22.
  • The rural LFPR in the survey stood at 57.5% (up from 57.4% in 2020-21), whereas its urban equivalent saw an increase to 49.7% (from 49.1%).


Quarterly survey (CWS):

  • For urban India, UR stagnated (after declining for five consecutive quarters till July-September FY23,) at 7.2% in the December quarter.
  • The LFPR increased marginally to 48.2% from 47.9% in the September quarter.
  • Youth unemployment (for the 15-29 age group) marginally increased to 18.6% in the December quarter, primarily driven by a rise in the female youth UR.


Insta Links:

Unemployment has decreased, says Labour Survey


Mains Links:

How globalization has led to the reduction of employment in the formal sector of the Indian economy? Is increased informalization detrimental to the development of the country? (UPSC 2016)


Prelims Links: (UPSC 2020)

With reference to the Indian economy after the 1991 economic liberalization, consider the following statements:

  1. Worker productivity (Rs per worker at 2004-05 prices) increased in urban areas while it decreased in rural areas.
  2. The percentage share of rural areas in the workforce steadily increased.
  3. In rural areas, the growth in the non-farm economy increased.
  4. The growth rate in rural employment decreased.


Which of the statements given above is/are correct?

  1. 1 and 2 only
  2. 3 and 4 only
  3. 3 only
  4. 1, 2 and 4 only


Ans: 2