The Portuguese unemployment rate dropped to 11.1% in 2016

  • ECO News
  • 14 February 2017

On the last quarter of 2016, the unemployment rate in Portugal was 10.5%. Yet, when considering last year as a whole, it decreased to 11.1%, the lowest rate since 2010.

The unemployment rate decreased to 11.1% in 2016, disclosed INE (Statistics Portugal) this Wednesday. This is the lowest percentage since 2010, when the unemployment rate was 10.8%.

Over the last three months of 2016, the unemployment rate was 10.5%, meaning it remained unchanged when compared to the third quarter. This percentage was obtained through a decrease of the number of employed people when compared to the third quarter of 2016, and also a decrease in the working population. This means the unemployment rate did not rise merely because there were a lot of people who left the labor market; therefore, one must be careful when extrapolating this years’ data.

Unemployment rates from 1998 to 2016

Source: INE – Statistics Portugal (values shown as % of working population)

ECO was able to ascertain that the government was anticipating a 10.4% rate for the last quarter of 2016 and 11% for the whole year. The 2016 result means the Portuguese government is expecting the unemployment rate in the beginning of 2017 will be close to the 10% threshold, lowering the rate to less than two digits throughout 2017.