According to the latest payroll data released by the Employment Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO), the net employment generation in the formal sector shot up to a 17-month high reaching 8.96 lakh jobs in the month of January. The EPFO has been releasing the payroll data since April 2018 covering the period starting September 2017. The number of EPFO subscribers was 131 per cent high in January 2019 as compared to January 2018 when only 3.87 lakh EPFO subscribers were added.
According to the data, a total of 2,75,609 jobs were created in September 2017 and about 76.48 lakh new subscribers were added to social security schemes of the EPFO between September 2017 to January 2019. The payroll data had witnessed a slight decline (1.8%) in December 2018 stopping at 7.03 lakh as compared to the estimate of 7.16 lakh released the previous month. For the period between September 2017-December 2018, the EPFO revised the cumulative job addition data downwards 6.6 percent to 67.52 lakh as against the forecast of 72.32 lakh.
Being the closing month of the financial year, March 2018 experienced the sharpest decline with 29,023 members exiting the EPFO subscription contrary to last month’s estimated addition of 5,498 members. During January 2019, the highest number of jobs were created in the 22-25 year age group which was 2.44 lakh jobs. This was followed by 2.24 lakh jobs in the 18-21 year age bracket.
According to the EPFO, the data of the exited members is based on the individual claims and establishments and the data uploaded by the employers whereas the data of new subscribers is based on the Universal Account Number (UAN) generated in the system and those having received a non-zero subscription.
The EPFO data is provisional as the employee records are updated as a regular process and the same gets updated in subsequent months.