The effect of pandemic and the closure of activities such as hospitality, non-food trade and other sectors derived from the lack of activity has made the data of the Labor Force Survey of the first quarter are influenced by this atypical situation, although it is muffled by impacting in the last fortnight of March, as indicated by the INE.
Thus, between January and March the occupation has fallen in Gipuzkoa by 1,100 people, until placing the total figure at 309,700. In any case, it is a significantly lower figure than that shown by the PRA, produced by Eustat, with 3,200 fewer. But keep in mind that the EPA is the official survey for European comparisons.
In the case of Basque Country, the decrease is 3,300 occupied, up to 930,000. All in all, this is the smallest percentage drop in the entire State, with 0.35%, which means that employment has better withstood the onslaught of the coronavirus. The state average shows a decrease of 1.43%, which means 285,600 fewer employees, to stay at 19,681,300.
On this occasion, the INE includes in a section the impact that the pandemic may have had on employment, referring to those employed who have not worked in the reference week, which amounts to 509,800 people, a circumstance that blames the ERTE, whose workers do not leave the list of employed if this situation does not extend beyond three months.
Back in our territory, the decrease in employment occurs practically entirely in the services, which leave 1,200 busy, followed by agriculture, with 600 fewer, and to a much lesser extent by industry, which withstands the pull with a drop of 100 employed. For its part, construction adds 700 jobs.
This higher incidence in services means that the decrease in employment affects only women (-1,500), since it increases among men (400).
Talking about the number of unemployed also decreases despite the fact that the occupation decreases, a circumstance that is due to the fact that the number of inactive, that is, people who are not looking for a job. This is due, according to the INE, to the fact that many of the people who have lost their jobs have not had time or do not meet all the requirements to move to the active job search list.
In Gipuzkoa, the number of unemployed decreases by 2,300 people, as the active population falls by 3,400. The number of unemployed it falls more among men than among women. In total, March closes with 23,000 unemployed, which shows a rate of6.91%, slightly above that of Alava (5.59%) and below that of Bizkaia (10.72%). In the Basque Country the rate is 8.72%, almost six points less than the state average (14.41%). In the State as a whole, the number of unemployed increases by 121,000 to 3,313,000.
In addition, the decrease in busy we must add the almost 600,000 workers with suspended employment by ERTE, a reality that in turn explains another striking fact of this EPA: the rise of about 510,000 employees who have not worked in the reference week, another figure that is unprecedented in a first quarter and reflects the size of this pandemic .
Although this high number of people affected by an ERTE are not counted in the total number of unemployed or in the fall in employment, it is reflected in the effective number of hours worked, which has experienced a “significant decrease” of 4.25% “due to the period in which it has been necessary to limit economic activity”, as specified by the INE. “In order to find a greater decrease in working time in the first quarter, you have to go back to 2009,” he admits.
ELA wanted to make clear that these data do not reflect at all the reality that the working class is living, “with numerous layoffs, ERTE and people without being able to face expenses due to the paralysis of income”, and claimed that the working class must be defended ” and make the crisis pay for high incomes, companies and capital ». For their part, CC OO and LAB warned of the risk of mass layoffs when the measures approved by the government end.