Abstract The number of suicides in South Korea totaled 4840 in 1995 and 8569 in 1998; in Japan, suicides totaled 21,420 in 1995 and 31,755 in 1998. Suicide prevention is an important issue for both South Korea and Japan. In South Korea, factors related to the increase in suicides must be clarified, and specific suicide prevention measures must be promptly discussed in order to decrease the number of suicides. Therefore, this report examined suicide and unemployment rates and increased rates of mining and industrial production and of money supply in South Korea from 1990 to 2002. This report also discusses the relationships between suicide and unemployment rates and increased rates of mining and industrial production and increased rates of money supply during the same period. During the period studied, annual suicide rates ranged from 7.1 to 18.3 per 100,000 populations. Multiple regression analysis indicated that the suicide rate was clearly related to the unemployment rate, but the suicide rate was not related to increased rates of mining and industrial production and increased rates of money supply. Thus, when unemployment rates increase, relevant organizations and the community should pay close attention to the increase in suicide rates.