Some 600,000 jobs destroyed and an unemployment rate of 16.1%. At the beginning of 2020, no one could imagine the drift of the labor market that the year would bring. The year of the coronavirus pandemic. At least the first. 2020 ended with 622,600 fewer workers and 527,900 more unemployed compared to the previous year due to the crisis caused by the impact of COVID-19, which has raised the unemployment rate to 16.1%. The total number of unemployed stood at 3,719,800 people.
The data comes from the EPA (Labor Force Survey) for the fourth quarter of 2020. As has happened since the arrival of the virus, the data is exceptional due to the pandemic. If in 2019, a particularly good year, 92,600 jobs were created and the number of unemployed was reduced by 22,500 people in the last three months of the year, this 2020 the fourth quarter has left 167,400 more workers and unemployment has been reduced by 3,100 people .
In what coxtext? The end of 2020 was marked by the second wave of the coronavirus, which has finally overlapped with the third, and therefore with restrictions in several territories to stop infections. Some measures were relaxed in the ‘save Christmas’ campaign, an explosive cocktail for contagions, but in any case this last quarter of the year has been atypical, with limitations to activity, especially in the hotel business, leisure and tourism, key sectors in Spain.
The behavior of the labor market in 2020 was as follows: employment fell by 285,600 people in the first quarter of the year, marked only at the end by the outbreak of the coronavirus in mid-March. The disaster came in the second quarter of the year, with the destruction of more than a million jobs. In summer, a period that returned to a certain “normality” after overcoming the first wave of the pandemic, employment rebounded strongly, with 569,600 more workers, but was not able to recover everything lost. And, finally, in the last quarter, employment has increased more than in other years, with those 167,400 more workers. But the balance of the year, the final photo, is still of a significant loss of employment: 600,000 fewer employed persons.