Unemployment data still hasn’t shown Covid-19 impacts

Photo: Tânia Rêgo/ABr

The Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) reported that the official unemployment rate has risen to 12.2 percent in Q1 2020 — a 1.3-percentage-point increase from last year. According to the institute, an extra 1.2 million people are now looking for work, meaning that almost 13 million Brazilians are out of the workforce. 

However, experts warn that the figures do not yet reflect the impact of the coronavirus pandemic. As today’s Daily Briefing explains (for premium subscribers), the government has met enormous hurdles to collect unemployment data due to social isolation measures.

This week, the federal government estimated that roughly 150,000 people have filed for unemployment benefits amid the Covid-19 pandemic. Also, a survey carried out by credit reporting agency Boa Vista SCPC shows that 52 percent of Brazilian families will be unable to pay their bills in the coming months.