Monthly Survey of Services

Services sector up 2.6% in November, sixth increase in a row

Section: Economic Statistics | Caio Belandi

January 13, 2021 09h00 AM | Last Updated: January 13, 2021 02h14 PM

#PraCegoVer A foto mostra um pequeno restaurante, do lado direito, um quadro com o cardápio e do aldo esquerdo, um rapaz de costas entrando no lugar.
Services rendered to households increased by 8.2% in November from October - Photo: Tânia Rego/Agência Brasil

The services sector increased by 2.6% from October to November, sixth increase in a row. Despite the cumulative increase of 19.2% in this period, thte result is still insufficient to make up for the losses registered between February and May, still 3.2% below the February level.

The comparison with November 2019 shows the total volume of services fell by 4.8%, and marked the ninth negative rate in a row in this index. These are some of the results of the Monthly Survey of Services (PMS), released today (13) by the IBGE.

In terms of cumulative index in the year, decrease was of 8.3% against that in the same period in 2019. In 12 months, decrease was of 7.4%, with a continuation of the downward trend initiated January (1.0%). That is the main negative result since the beginning of the series in December 2012.


All the five activities surveyed recorded increases from October to November, with a highlight to transportation, auxiliary services to transportation and mailing activities, which increased by 2.4%, and services rendered to households, which increased by 8.2%. These were the most affected activities by the pandemic.

According to the PMS manager, Rodrigo Lobo, activities in the services sector facing biggest difficulties are those demanding face-to-face contact and the sector has not yet recovered from losses. “Activities such as restaurants, hotels, services rendered to households and passenger transportation – by air, road, subway – managed to improve, but the need of social distancing has prevented the sector from getting back to pre-pandemic levels,” Mr. Lobo explains. Another highlight was the activity of professional, administrative and complementary services, with an increase of 2.5%.

Also regarding transportation, there was increase for the seventh month in a row, with a cumulative increase of 26.7% between May and November, but it still has to advance by 5.4% in order to reach the February level, a month preceding the implementation of sanitary measures to mitigate Covid 19 transmission.

Mr. Lobo explains that, within this activity, the segment of road transportation of cargo, together with passenger transportation, was influential. “There is an important correlation of this segment with Trade and Industry. Both have overcome the pre-pandemic level and results affected this activity.

Services rendered to households increased by 98.8% in the last seven months, but an increase of 34.2% is still neede to get back to the February level. professional, administrative and complementary services reached a 9.5% increase in the June-November period, after a decrease of 16.8% registered between February and May.

Only information and communication services (0.5%) and other services (0.5%) surpassed the February level, due to the good performance of information technology services and auxiliary financial services, respectively.

Services fell for the ninth time against the previous year

A comparison with November 2019 shows that services volume fell 4.8%, ninth negative consecutive rate in this indicator. Three of the four activities recorded decrease, witmore than one third (35.5%) of the 166 types of services investigated.

“When the basis for comparison changes, observations are different, since in 2019 a pandemic was not a reality as well as recommendation such as social distancing and remote work. For that reason, we depart from a higher basis for comparison," Mr. Lobo explains, as he recalls the Noin a series of nine negative results, only second to the March figure (-2.8%), when restrictions started to be implemented.

Also against November last year,among the sectors, professional, administrative and complementary services (-10.7%) and services rendered to families (-26.2%) accounted for the main negative contributions to total volume of services. Another relevant decrease came from transportion, auxiliary services to transportation and mailing activities (-3.7%). Other services (7.3%) and information and communication services (1.0%) were the only activities recording increase in this comparison.