Brazil’s latest unemployment figures, released by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics, was filled with records — none of them positive. In just three months, the coronavirus pandemic erased jobs that Brazil took almost three years to create, and left more than half of economically active Brazilians without a job, with social isolation crashing into the fragile cornerstone of economic recovery: the gig economy.
In the three-month span ending in April, 21 percent of informal jobs were cut, leaving 2.4 million people without means to provide for themselves and their families. As a result, only 49.5 percent of the workforce is currently enrolled in any sort of professional activity, the lowest level on record. To compound these woes, underemployment jumped to 27.5 percent, meaning 30 million people were left idle, or without sufficient hours.