New figures from Statistics SA show that SA’s formal nonagricultural sector shed 31,000 jobs in the third quarter of 2017, dropping to just 9.59m formally employed people. With losses of 41,000 in the first quarter and 31,000 by June, this marks the third straight quarter of job losses.

In the third quarter, the community services sector (mostly government) lost 10,000 jobs, mining 9,000 and manufacturing 5,000.

Meanwhile, gross earnings paid to employees increased by R19.5bn (3.3%), from R586bn in June to R606bn in September.