Unemployment in Portugal drops to 6.5% in March

  • ECO News
  • 29 April 2021

The country's unemployment rate dropped to 6.5% in March, according to Statistics Portugal (INE). Labour underutilization also decreased in the third month of 2021.

People walking in Rua Augusta, Lisbon.Hugo Amaral/ECO

In March, the unemployment in Portugal fell. According to data published this Thursday by Statistics Portugal (INE), the rate was 6.5%, 0.3 percentage points (p.p.) less than the previous month, but 0.2 p.p. above the value recorded in the same period. In the third month of 2021, the labour underutilisation rate also decreased, in chain variation, and the employed population increased.

According to the note released by INE, in March, the month in which the country began implementing the lockdown easing plan, the employed population grew 0.3% compared to February, and the unemployed population fell 4.2%. In comparison with the same period, the first of these indicators rose 0.6% and the second worsened by 3.7%.

As for the unemployment rate, INE revealed it stood at 6.5%, 0.3 p.p. less than in February, but 0.2% more than in the same month of 2020, when the first cases of Covid-19 were identified in Portugal and the first restrictions on the lives of citizens and companies were put in place.

The unemployment rate declined to 6.5% in March, down by 0.3 pp from the previous month.Statistics Portugal (INE)

With the aforementioned 6.5%, in March, the unemployment rate thus reached the minimums of May 2020, when it was at 6%; And it fell for the second consecutive month, having recorded a less significant decline in February (0.1 p.p.).

However, among young people, the unemployment rate worsened in March. It stood at 23%, 0.1 p.p. higher than in the previous month. Among adults, the unemployment rate (5.4%) decreased. The employment rate stood at 61.2%, up 0.1 p.p. more than in February, but 0.4 p.p. less than in the same month a year earlier.

Regarding labour underutilisation, March brought the positive observation that this rate fell by 0.5 p.p. in chain variation to stand at 13.3%. Still, it remained 0.6 p.p. above the value recorded in March 2020. “In March 2021, labour underutilisation stood at 699.5 thousand people, corresponding to a decrease of 3.6% (26.1 thousand) compared to February 2021 and 2.9% (20.6 thousand) compared to December 2020 and an increase of 5.3% (35.0 thousand) compared to March 2020,” notes INE.