Singapore’s unemployment rate in the first quarter was 2.2 percent, lower than the Manpower Ministry’s preliminary estimate of 2.3 percent, official data showed Tuesday.

The latest jobless rate was unchanged from the fourth quarter of 2016 and slightly higher than the 1.9 percent in January-to-March in 2016.

Total employment in the first quarter 2017 fell by 6,800, after climbing by 2,300 in the last three months of last year. That was the biggest quarterly contraction since the second quarter of 2009.

Singapore’s jobless rate has been trending upwards amid patchy economic prospects. The slowing economy has taken its toll on job seekers, who are taking longer to land jobs.

— Reuters contributed to this report.

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