Job Creation and Destruction in South Africa

The authors (Kerr, Wittenberg and Arrow) use the Quarterly Employment Survey conducted by Statistics South Africa to explore how South African enterprises create and destroy jobs, shedding light on many of the policy questions that are relevant in a high unemployment society like South Africa. They find that job creation and destruction rates are similar to those found in OECD countries. There is little evidence that labour legislation creates rigidities that prevent firms from hiring or firing workers. They also find that larger firms are better net creators of jobs than small firms and that net job creation rates are negative in manufacturing, consistent with work using household surveys.