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Pandemic drives Brazil jobless rate to record 14.4%

Pandemic drives Brazil jobless rate to record 14.4%

Brazil’s jobless rate hit a record 14.4 percent in the June to August period as the coronavirus pandemic pounded Latin America’s largest economy, the government reported Friday (Oct 30).

This is the highest level of unemployment recorded in Brazil since the government started measuring joblessness by three-month periods in 2012.

For the May to July stretch it had reached 13.8 percent, which was also a record, the Brazilian statistics institute said.

It said that in June to August a record of nearly six million people simply gave up trying to find a job.

The pandemic has taken a crushing human toll in Brazil, killing more than 158,000 people.

That is the second-highest death toll worldwide, after the United States.

The health crisis has also triggered a political fight in Brazil between state governors who support lockdown measures to save lives and far-right President Jair Bolsonaro, an ally of Donald Trump.

Like the US president, Bolsonaro regularly downplays the risk of the virus and favors keeping the economy open.

– Source: News websites