Central Bank explains figures
THE Central Bank of Barbados and the Barbados Statistical Service (BSS) are not at odds over the rate of unemployment here, says the bank’s Governor Dr Delisle Worrell.
In seeking to clarify the disparity between the bank’s 11 per cent unemployment statistic and the BSS’ 12.1 per cent, Worrell said the bank’s number was consistent with the BSS survey.
Speaking at a Press conference today to discuss the Review The Barbados Economy For The First Nine Months Of 2011, which was issued on Tuesday, the Governor explained: “What the [BSS] survey says is that the rate of unemployment could have been 10.2 per cent, could have been 11 per cent, could have been 12.1 per cent, could have been 13.9 per cent, or any other number within that range.
“We don’t know on the basis of the survey where the actual real number lies. In order to find out where the real number is, we had to assemble additional evidence, which is what the Central Bank did. We went to [the National Insurance Scheme] and found out how many people had applied for unemployment benefits since March – a total of 700 from the most recent data.
“We then [asked], is that consistent with what the private sector has observed? So we spoke to 30 of the largest employers in Barbados. Is that consistent with what the unions have observed? – we talked to the unions. Is that consistent with what the Employers’ Confederation observed?
“So, at most there was a loss of 1 000 jobs between June and September. That gives us a rate of unemployment of approximately 11 per cent.“Now 11 per cent sits within the range of 10.2 to 13.9, so it is entirely consistent with the results obtained by the Barbados Statistical Services and is entirely consistent with the methodology that they use.”