ISSN 2330-717X

Brazil Reports Unemployment Hits 12.9% Of Population


By Cristina Indio do Brasil

Brazil’s unemployment rate went up 1.2 percentage points and stood at 12.9 percent in the three-month period ending in May 2020. The increase is registered in comparison with the three months between December 2019 and February 2020, when it was observed at 11.6 percent. Compared to the same period in 2019, then it was 12.3 percent, the expansion is 0.6 percentage points.

The result from the Continuous PNAD (National Household Sample Survey) for the month of May was published Tuesday (Jun. 30) by government statistics agency IBGE. It further reveals that the unemployed population saw a three percent growth (368 thousand people), going to 12.7 million, compared to the previous three-month period, when these totaled 12.3 million. It was statistically steady compared to the same time span in 2019 (13 million people).


The employed population went down 8.3 percent (7.8 million fewer people) and reached 85.9 million from the previous quarter, and decreased 7.5 percent, which represents 7 million fewer people, compared to the same three-month period in 2019. Both declines were record lows in the current time series.

The employment rate, which is the percentage of employed people at working age, went down to 49.5 percent, the lowest level since the beginning of this time series, in 2012. There was a five percentage-point reduction against the previous quarter, when it stood at 54.5 percent, and 5 percentage points compared to the same period in 2019 (54.5%).

The work force (employed plus unemployed), estimated at 98.6 million people, shrank seven percent from the previous quarter, or 7.3 million people; and was down 6.9 percent compared to the same period in 2019.

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Agência Brasil (ABr) is the national public news agency, run by the Brazilian government. It is a part of the public media corporation Empresa Brasil de Comunicação (EBC), created in 2007 to unite two government media enterprises Radiobrás and TVE (Televisão Educativa).

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