According to the latest data from Brazil’s official statistics bureau, the country’s unemployment rate in Q2 2021 dropped 0.6 percentage points to 14.1 percent. Simultaneously, the percentage of underworked individuals fell 3 percent, with 32.2 million people out of jobs or not working as many hours as they would like or are able to.
While underworked individuals combine the unemployed with those not working enough hours, the total number of people in the latter situation hit an all-time record of 7.5 million.
After labor slumps during the pandemic brought unemployment rates to their highest on record, Brazil is starting to see some material improvement on this front. Job creation this year is at its best since 2010, but wages are stagnating. The average monthly salary for new hires stood at BRL 1,801.99 (approximately USD 350) in July.
The number of discouraged workers (those of working age who have given up looking for work) fell 6.5 percent in Q2, signaling that more and more people are returning to the labor market as some sense of normality resumes after pandemic chaos earlier in the year.