Total employment reached 27.3 million people in 2021, a 1.4 percent increase compared to 2020, or 369,000 more jobs. That was the biggest increase in jobs in seven years.
According to Statistics Korea on Tuesday, online purchases in November totaled 17.5 trillion won, which is a 16.5 percent year-on-year increase and a high for data that have been compiled since 2001.
Consumer prices for the whole of 2021 were up 2.5 percent compared to 2020, the sharpest increase in a decade.
Industrial production rose 5.9 percent on year in November as chip and car output rebounded, according to a release from Statistics Korea.
The self-employed in Korea suffered a dramatic drop in earnings in the first year of the pandemic, a recent study showed. In 2020, their "operating profit" fell more than 40 percent.
More than half of Koreans aged between 40 and 64 held debt last year as more people took out loans to buy homes amid skyrocketing housing prices, data showed Tuesday.
Korean households had an average of 88 million won ($74,360) of debt at the end of the first quarter, according to a report issued by Statistics Korea, the Bank of Korea and the Financial Supervisory Service on Thursday.
A total of 27.8 million people were employed in November. "The overall job figures are improving," Finance Minister Hong Nam-ki said. "However, we will remain alert to industries and people affected by Covid-19."
Jobs for people over the age of 59 increased by 380,000 last year, half the total jobs created during the year.
One in seven married women in Korea have no children, and of them, half have no plans to give birth.