There were 4.2 million jobless Filipinos in January 2008, almost the same level as last year, according to the latest labor force survey of the National Statistics Office (NSO).
The country's jobless rate was 7.4 percent in January 2008 compared to 7.8 percent a year ago, the NSO announced Tuesday.
However, the unemployment rate increased on a quarterly basis, from 6.3 percent recorded in October 2007.
The underemployment rate fell slightly from 21.5 percent, or 12 million Filipinos wanting more work in January 2007, to 18.9 percent or 10.8 million this year.
The NSO defines unemployed persons (15 years old and above) as those who have no job or business and are actively looking for work.
Underemployed persons are all employed persons who "express the desire to have additional hours of work" or want to "have a job with longer working hours."
Among the regions, the National Capital Region had the highest unemployment rate of 12.5 percent.
Males had higher unemployment rate of 7.8 percent compared to females at 6.7 percent.
For every ten unemployed, five (49.6%) were aged 15-24 years, while three were in the age group 25-34.
Around 39 percent of the unemployed had attained college level and 33.5 percent were high school graduates.
The NSO said a total of 33.7 million people were employed as of January 2008, which placed the employment rate at 92.6 percent.
The number of persons in the labor force in January 2008 was estimated at 36.4 million out of the estimated 57.4 million population 15 years and over. '
These numbers translated into a labor force participation rate of 63.4 percent, compared to last year's figure of 64.8 percent.
Of the estimated 33.7 million employed persons, around one-half (50.2%) were in the services sector, more than one-third (35.0%) in the agriculture sector and the rest (14.8%) were in the industry sector.
These proportions were almost the same as in January 2007 estimates at 50.5 percent for services sector, 34.7 percent for agriculture sector and 14.8 percent for industry sector.