Business

Assessing the extent of Brazil’s labor market woes just got harder

Brazil's labor market has grim prospects. But the full damage wrought by the pandemic may not even be knowable as data is no longer as reliable as it used to be

labor Rio de Janeiro street during the peak of restrictions. Photo: Delmiro Junior/Shutterstock
Rio de Janeiro street during the peak of restrictions. Photo: Delmiro Junior/Shutterstock

The pandemic rages on in Brazil. Several states have enforced tight restrictions in a desperate attempt to lower infection rates and avoid a full-scale collapse of local health services. While these measures are in line with recommendations from experts, they exert an economic toll on poor populations, most of whom are already relegated to informal jobs that depend greatly on the in-person economy. Though many states are rolling back restrictions, labor conditions will likely remain precarious for months to come.

Since May 2020, when the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics began measuring the effects of the pandemic on...

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