Chinese Survey Shows a Higher Jobless Rate

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A new survey shows that the real unemployment rate in China is double the official level, and layoffs rose sharply among migrant workers in the past year, underlining a challenge for China's new leaders to maintain growth, The Wall Street Journal reported. The survey of 8,000 households shows the urban unemployment rate hit 8.05% in June, up slightly from 8% in August 2011 and nearly twice as high as the official 4.1% rate. The survey was run by Gan Li, an economics professor at South Western University of Finance and Economics in Chengdu. The unemployment rate for China's army of 160 million migrant workers has risen sharply to 6% in June 2012, up from 3.4% in August 2011 according to the survey, suggesting 10 million unemployed as a result of the sharp slowdown in exports and real-estate construction. The survey represents the most ambitious attempt yet to map China's labor markets, household income and asset ownership—areas where the official data are widely regarded as inaccurate or deficient. Read more. (Subscription required.)