The number of employed persons in Brazil registered the greatest expansion for a quarter ended in January, maintaining the informal character in the recovery of the labor market under the impact of the pandemic, but with the unemployment rate at the highest level for the period.
The Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) reported on Wednesday that the unemployment rate it stood at 14.2% in the three months to January, from 14.3% from August to October 2020. The fourth quarter ended with unemployment at 13.9%.
The median of Reuters research predictions was that unemployment would be at 14.1% in the period.
The country had ended 2020 with an average unemployment rate of 13.5%, the highest since 2012, according to data from Pnad Contínua.
This result was a consequence of the Covid-19 pandemic restriction measures, with the job market being the last to recover in times of crisis.
The focus now revolves around a new granting of emergency aid to families, as well as the consequences of stricter restrictions adopted in many parts of the country in the face of the resurgence of the pandemic earlier this year.
In the three months to January, there were 14.272 million unemployed people in Brazil, against 14.061 in the previous quarter and 11.913 million in the same period of the previous year.
The total number of employed persons increased by 2.0% in the period over August to October, reaching 86.025 million. But in relation to the same period of the previous year, the contingent fell by 8.6%.
“Despite losing strength in relation to the growth observed in the quarter ended in October, the 2% expansion in the employed population is the largest for a quarter ended in January. This growth is still influenced by the end of the year, since November and December were months of important growth ”, explained the research analyst, Adriana Beringuy.
However, the improvement in the number of employed persons was still due to informality in the labor market. Employees in the private sector with a formal contract had a gain of only 0.1% in the quarter up to January over August to October, reaching 29.792 million, while the contingent of those who did not have a formal contract reached 9.809 million, an increase of 3, 6%.
“The loss of strength in the growth of the occupation comes mainly from the smaller expansion in Industry, Commerce and Construction”, said Beringuy.
Between November and January, the real average income of workers was 2,521 reais and 2,597 reais between August and October pointed out by IBGE.