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Monthy Continuous PNAD

Unemployment falls to 8.9% in quarter ending in August

Section: Social Statistics | Caio Belandi

September 30, 2022 09h00 AM | Last Updated: September 30, 2022 05h02 PM

#PraCegoVer A foto mostra uma profissional de saúde, do lado direito, com uniforme branco e o logotipo do SUS estampado na manga. Ao centro, uma mulher está sendo atendida.
Number of workers in the health sector grew and helped to reduce the unemployment rate - Photo: Jan Ribeiro/City Hall of Olinda

The unemployment rate, which measures unemployment in Brazil, remains dropping and reached 8.9% in the quarter ended in August.  This rate represents a decrease of 0.9 percentage points in comparison with the previous quarter, ended in May.  It was the lowest level since the quarter ended in July 2015 (8.7%). The number of employed persons reached 99 million, beating again the record in the time series, started in 2012.  The usual real earnings grew for the second month in a row and reached R$2,713 in the quarter.

The data came from the Continuous National Household Sample Survey - Continuous PNAD, released today (30) by the IBGE.

The employment-population ratio, i.e., the percentage of employed persons in the population at working age, was estimated at 57.1%, a growth compared with the previous quarter (56.4%) and above the same period last year (53.4%).  “The labor market follows the trend showed last month, continuing the upward flow along the year,” explains Adriana Beringuy, the coordinator of PNAD.

Three activities influenced the drop in the unemployment in August and registered an increase in the employment: The sector of “Trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles” rose 3% compared with the previous quarter, adding 566 thousand persons to the labor market. “Public administration, defense, social security, education, human health and social services” grew 2.9% (more 488 thousand persons), whereas the group of “Other services” rose 4.1% (211 thousand persons).



Unemployed population is the lowest since November 2015

The number of unemployed workers was of 9.7 million persons, dropping to the lowest level since November 2015. It represents a drop of 8.8% (less 937 thousand persons) in the quarterly comparison and of 30.1% (less 4.2 million) if compared with the same period last year.

The survey unveils that the number of those employed without a formal contract in the private sector (13.2 million persons) is the highest one in the time series, started in 2012. It grew 2.8% in the quarter (more 355 thousand persons) and 16% (1.8 million persons) in the year. On the other hand, the number of those employed with a formal contract in the private sector – excluding domestic workers – increased 1.1% and hit 36 million.

The number of self-employed workers was of 25.9 million persons, remaining stable in the comparison with the previous quarter, whereas the number of those employed in the public sector grew 4.1% and reached 12.1 million.

Among those discouraged, the total population was of 4.3 million persons and the percentage of discouraged persons was 3.8%, both of them remaining stable.

Average earnings grow for the second month in a row

The Continuous PNAD released by the IBGE also unveils that the usual real earnings grew for the second month in a row, after two months without growth. In August, the average wage of the Brazilian worker hit R$2,713. This value represents a rise of 3.1% over the previous quarter, though it remained stable in the annual comparison. “This growth is mainly associated with the retraction of inflation. Yet, the expansion in the employment with a formal contract and in the employers are factors that help as well,” says Beringuy.

The group of those employed with a formal contract grew 2% (more R$51), whereas that of employers rose 11.5% (R$689). Among the sectors, the highlight is “Agriculture, livestock, forestry, fishery and aquaculture”, which rose 7.2% (R$123) and “Industry”, which rose 4.4% (R$111). “Trade, repair of motor vehicles and motorcycles” with a rise of 3.5% (R$77) and “Information, communication and financial, real estate, professional and administrative activities” with a rise of 5.5% (R$205) grew the usual real average earnings compared with the previous quarter, ended in May.

More about the survey

The Continuous PNAD is the main instrument to monitor workforce in Brazil. The survey sample per quarter corresponds to 211 thousand households surveyed in Brazil. Nearly two thousand interviewers work in the survey in 26 states and in the Federal District, integrated to the data collection network of more than 500 IBGE branches.

Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the IBGE implemented data collection by telephone on March 17, 2020. In July 2021, face-to-face data collection was resumed.  The id of the interviewers can be confirmed at the Answering the IBGE website or through the Call Center (0800 7218181) by checking their ID numbers, which can be requested by the informants. See PNAD data at Sidra.

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