Jobless soars in Brazil due to virus

2 July, 2020 12:00 AM printer

RIO DE JANEIRO: Brazil's unemployment rate rose to almost 13 percent in the March-May quarter as the effects of the coronavirus pandemic saw a record 7.8 million jobs cut, according to official figures published on Tuesday.

Unemployment rose by 1.3 percentage points from the December-February quarter and 0.6 points compared with the same quarter last year, the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE) said, reports AFP.

Chile and Colombia also reported jumps in unemployment.

It was the biggest loss of jobs in Brazil since record-keeping began in 2012.

"It's an unprecedented reduction and mainly affects informal workers," said IBGE analyst Adriana Beringuy.

Of the 7.8 million jobs lost, 5.8 million were in the informal sector of people who get paid off the books, which accounts for 37.6 percent of workers in this country.

Employment fell by 8.3 percent to 49.5 percent, another record.