The number of persons in full-time employment rose by 11,185 between July 2018 and July 2019, according to Jobsplus records, a 5.4% increase over the 12-month period. In line with developments in recent months, growth in employment continued to be mainly driven by the private sector, which accounted for an increase in full-timers of 10,484, while the number of people employed full-time in the public sector rose by 701.
In the meantime, Jobsplus data show that the number of persons on the unemployment register stood at 1,666 in October, marginally lower from 1,668 in September and 1,790 a year earlier.
In recent months, the Bank’s Business Conditions’ Index (BCI) remained unchanged when compared to the previous month, suggesting that the economy is no longer operating at above normal business conditions but rather is moving close to the long-term average. The BCI was affected by the continued deceleration in GDP growth and industrial production, weaker declines in unemployment and lower sentiment on a year-on-year basis. These factors were partly offset by slightly faster growth in tourist arrivals. By contrast, economic sentiment edged up and remained above its long-term average.
Annual HICP inflation moderated to 1.4% in October, from 1.6% in September.
Malta’s nominal harmonised competitiveness indicator (HCI) contracted by 1.5% in the year to October. The data suggest that Malta’s international competitiveness was impacted by favourable exchange rate movements during the period, augmented by movements in relative prices.
In October 2019, the Consolidated Fund recorded a deficit of €27.7 million, a rise of €0.6 million when compared with the deficit registered in October 2018, as a rise in expenditure slightly offset an increase in revenue. In October 2019, the total stock of government debt amounted to €5,261.3 million, an increase of €5.8 million when compared with a month earlier.
The Economic Update is available on the website of the Central Bank of Malta.