The Secretary of State for Labor and Social Economy, Joaquín Pérez Rey, has stated that the decrease in unemployment in almost 90,000 people registered in the month of July is “very relevant” and it must be assessed in a “special” way due to the circumstance in which the Spanish economy is after the pandemic.
This was pointed out at the press conference to present the data on unemployment and Social Security affiliation registered in the seventh month of the year, where he stressed that this data continues the trend of improvement in employment that began in May . “This is consistent with the increase in Social Security affiliation and hiring,” he added, after highlighting that it is the best figure for a decrease in a month of July for 22 years.
Rey has highlighted that with the decrease in July, the total number of unemployed has stood at about 3.7 million people, similar to the one in July 2016 and one million people less than that registered in 2012. “90,000 fewer unemployed is a positive fact that may be contradictory with the latest known data from the Active Population Survey (EPA) or the National Accounts, but they are not”, has made clear the secretary of state, who has also pointed out that the EPA and accounting data correspond “to the toughest period of confinement.”
According to Rey, his Ministry makes a “cautious, but positive” assessment, since “registered unemployment and affiliation to Social Security reflect what is happening right now.” Taking into account the sectors, it has highlighted that the reduction in employment has been widespread and that unemployment has decreased in all sectors, except in agriculture, for “seasonal reasons linked to agricultural cycles”.
He has also pointed out that the expense in benefits for ERTE stood at 2,055 million euros in June, which represents a reduction of 38% compared to May. In addition, he believes “with great certainty” that when you have the data for July, spending on benefits will be reduced by around 1 billion.
On his side, the Secretary of State for Social Security, Israel Arroyo, pointed out that the affiliation data for July has been “remarkably high”, thus continuing the process of “gradual” recovery of affiliation from the highest point. critical of the Covid crisis, which occurred in mid-March.
«A good part of the affiliation that did not fall was transferred to these protection schemes such as ERTEs or the provision of self-employed workers and in parallel to the recovery of affiliation, the beneficiaries of these benefits have been falling into a state of activity» , has highlighted.
Arroyo explained that the exit of workers from the ERTEs is slowing down and that in parallel there is an increase in membership, which “probably has to do with the seasonality of employment in these summer months.
For the Secretary of State, that the summer membership be recovered as every year is not the “optimum”, because it is due to the temporality, which in Spain is structural, although he says that this reflects that “certain prior normality is recovered” a the coronavirus crisis.
Right now, little more than 1.1 million workers of the 3.5 million they came to have are housed in an ERTE. According to Arroyo, there are 95% of workers who are returning to their jobs, but 5% who are not active, either because they have retired or because they have gone unemployed.
Asked if the outbreaks are affecting unemployment and Social Security affiliation, the secretaries of state have indicated that the outbreaks began in late June and that they “still do not have an exact impact.”