MercoPress, en Español

Montevideo, May 24th 2017 - 23:36 UTC

Unemployment in Argentina falls to 7.6%: less people looking for jobs

Friday, March 17th 2017 - 21:55 UTC
Full article 20 comments
Macri revamped the stats agency which was widely viewed as manipulating economic data under the populist rule of ex president Cristina Fernandez. Macri revamped the stats agency which was widely viewed as manipulating economic data under the populist rule of ex president Cristina Fernandez.

Argentina's unemployment rate fell to 7.6% in the fourth quarter of 2016, the government's Indec statistics agency said in a report on Thursday, down from 8.5% in the third quarter as thousands of people stopped looking for work.

 The drop came as Latin America's third-largest economy showed signs of emerging from a deep recession. While economists estimate GDP fell by 2.5% throughout 2016, a government measure of monthly economic activity showed month-on-month upticks in November and December.

That did not boost total employment, however, as the number of Argentines with jobs remained steady at around 11.5 million. The economically active population, including those working or actively looking for work, fell by nearly 150,000 to 12.4 million.

“The drop in the unemployment rate is explained almost entirely by the drop in labor participation,” said Jorge Colina, economist at the Argentine Institute for Social Development, a think tank. “At the end of the year, as the holidays approach, they give up looking and plan to try again in March.”

Thursday's release marked the third time official unemployment data was published after President Mauricio Macri took office in December 2015 and revamped the country's statistics agency, which was widely viewed as manipulating economic data under the populist administration of former President Cristina Fernandez.

Since taking office 15 months ago, Macri's conservative government has enacted a number of market-friendly reforms aimed at liberalizing the economy and encouraging investment. Some of those policies have contributed to rampant inflation in the short term, eating into consumers' purchasing power.

Tensions between the government and the country's powerful unions have begun rising in recent weeks, as thousands of workers have taken to the streets to protest austerity measures and job cuts.

Categories: Economy, Politics, Argentina.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • Enrique Massot

    @Kanye

    Argentina is rapidly leaving behind any discussion about semantics, as citizens begin to go down to the streets to demonstrate their discontent about the economic policies of the current government, as pointed out by DT. The CGT's first general strike since Macri took power, on the other hand, has been set for April 6.

    One may now choose to remain in denial, or take off the pink-coloured glasses and acknowledge the damage that the Macri government is needlessly inflicting on the very same who believed his pre-election lies and propped him to the highest office.

    Fifteen months ago I predicted what Macri was going to do based on his history, ideology and the kind of campaign he ran. I am not happy to be proven right--the consequences are too painful for the majority of the Argentines.

    Yesterday's blunder of a senior newspaper in Argentina, that is Clarin's claim that former Spanish prime minister Felipe Gonzalez asked Macri “when Cristina was going to jail” during a tête-à-tête encounter clearly shows the increasing desperation of powerful interests represented by the newspaper and their attempt to eliminate CFK as a potential candidate in the October legislative election. The immediate denial of the Gonzalez and the Casa Rosada's official silence is eloquent and leaves Clarin's credibility in tatters.

    Mar 18th, 2017 - 08:48 pm +3
  • Enrique Massot

    @Kanye

    Nice!

    Wouldn't be nice if your claims had a shred of evidence in support. But there is none and you know it.

    You can still bring Macri propaganda that may have impressed people 15 months ago such as “Try to make economic reforms to attract investment and create a viable economy.” It is your denial of day-to-day reality that shows ideological, purposely blindness.

    Now that people are taking to the streets every week, when people asking for promised jobs are camping on 9 de Julio Avenue in downtown Buenos Aires and citizens are finding that Cristina may not have been so bad after all, then the only thing left to regime puppets is to keep parroting their totally outdated discourse.

    What really is in tatters here, my friend, is Macri's reputation, when public opinion polls locate Cambiemos third in the October legislative election voting intentions, behind Massa and behind...oh the horror! none other than Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner.

    Mar 19th, 2017 - 09:42 pm +2
  • Tarquin Fin

    @EM

    “Now that people are taking to the streets every week, when people asking for promised jobs are camping on 9 de Julio Avenue in downtown Buenos Aires”

    Those people camping out at 9 de Julio are exactly not the ones looking for jobs. They never will. How much does it cost to bring a man to a protest per day? 100 pesos, A woman with children per day? 300 pesos. A couple with two kids, living in the slum, not paying for any services or taxes whatsoever will make 400 pesos per day of protest on top of the 9000 pesos combined from their jobs at some obscure “Cooperativa” (I'd still like to see what they produce there) plus regular bags with groceries.

    A shop clerk (Empleado de Comercio) pays taxes and utility bills. Is required to show up 8+ hours every day including 4+ on Saturdays and could probably end up with 12000 pesos (excluding any sales commissions -very thin in that line of work).

    Why work then?

    You should come visit more often my friend.

    Mar 19th, 2017 - 10:27 pm +1
Read all comments

Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!