Demand for labour remains high in Denmark with employment up for 14th straight month

Denmark’s labour market remains on a trend which has seen the number of people in paid employment in the country grow month-on-month since early 2021.

hotels in copenhagen
The hotel sector was notable for its contribution as employment went up in Denmark in March for the 14th consecutive month. Photo: Søren Bidstrup/Ritzau Scanpix

New data from national agency Statistics Denmark shows that the number of people in paid employment increased by 16,000 between February and March this year and now stands at 2,947,000. The data is corrected for variations caused by work that is season-dependent.

The new figures represent the 14th consecutive month in which the number of people working in Denmark has increased.

Additionally, more people are in work now compared to just before the Covid-19 pandemic hit, with a knock-on effect on the economy and jobs.

145,000 more people are hired now than just before the Covid-19 crisis, senior economist with Sydbank, Mathias Dollerup Sproegel, told news wire Ritzau.

“The labour market continues to be a ray of sunshine in the Danish economy,” Sproegel said.

“Aside from record-high employment, unemployment is also close to the record-low from before 2008. That tells us that the labour force has been strengthen somewhat in recent years,” he said.

“That is due to earlier political reforms and an active effort to bring all available hands in the Danish economy into play,” he said.

READ ALSO: How Danish work permit rules are keeping out skilled foreigners living in Sweden

Another analyst, senior economist Lars Olsen with Danske Bank, said the figures evidenced that it is still possible to find staff to fill the many available positions on the labour market.

“This suggests that there are still reserves to draw on, probably among students and people who have not previously had a strong connection to the labour market,” he said in a written comment.

“It would also seem to help that the age of the state pension has been put up again this year, so nobody will reach pension age during the first half of this year,” he said.

READ ALSO: Could Denmark delay plan to increase retirement age?

Hotels and restaurants are among sectors which saw the strongest growth in employment in March, with over 5,500 new hires giving an increase of 4.6 percent.

Culture and leisure also saw notable growth at 3.3 percent or 1,900 people.

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Denmark bans companies from asking age of job applicants

Companies in Denmark are no longer permitted to ask the age of candidates applying for jobs with them.

Denmark bans companies from asking age of job applicants

The law, which was adopted in parliament in March, came into effect on Friday.

According to the law, applicants should no longer give their age when applying for jobs. The objective of the new law is to prevent employers from rejecting applicants because of their age.

Commenting in March when parliament passed the law, Employment Minister Peter Hummelgaard said that he hoped the law would give older members of the labour market better conditions when looking for work.

“I appreciate that this ban won’t do everything but it does send a strong signal,” Hummelgaard said.

“With this legislation, we want to avoid employers filtering their pile of applications by just looking at birth dates before reading through them, and that they actually address the competencies of the applicant,” he said.

A recent survey found that the number of people who feel discriminated based on their age when applying for work has fallen, even though the law had yet to take effect.

Trade union HK Privat, which represents around 100,000 private sector workers found that 17 percent of its members said they had experienced age discrimination, in a survey. A similar survey conducted last autumn returned a result of 24 percent to the same question.

Employment figures also show a positive trend in the area.

Unemployment and long-term unemployment among 50-59 year-olds has fallen by 50 percent within the last year, news wire Ritzau writes.