11 Jan
labour market european union

Covid-19: Total labour market slack drops slightly to 13.9% (third quarter 2020)

Covid-19. EU labour market in the third quarter 2020. Throughout the third quarter 2020, the labour market across the European Union (EU) recovered to some extent as COVID-19 measures taken were relaxed by most Member States (Eurostat figures).

Persons who had been temporarily absent from work thus returned to work, and those who had been unable to search for a job or had been unavailable to take up a job returned to the labour force.

This has contributed to an increase in both employment and unemployment, and to a slight decrease of the overall labour market slack.

In this release, Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, is publishing a set of seasonally adjusted
quarterly indicators in addition to employment and unemployment which help to capture the most recent
movements on the labour market in the EU Member States.

These include total labour market slack, which comprises all persons who have an unmet need for employment, absences from work as well as an index of total actual hours worked in the main job.

More new indicators on recent job leavers and starters, weekly total absences, as well as transitions are available in the Eurostat database.

Labour market slack down
In the third quarter of 2020, 188.0 million persons in the EU were employed.

The EU seasonally adjusted employment rate for people aged 20-64 stood at 72.4%, up by 0.3 pp from 72.1% in the second quarter 2020. 14.8 million persons were unemployed.

The EU seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 7.3%, up from 6.7% in the second quarter 2020.

At the same time, seasonally adjusted total labour market slack in the EU, consisting in unmet need for work, amounted to 29.4 million persons, which represented 13.9% of the extended labour force in the third quarter 2020, slightly down from 14.1% in the second quarter 2020.

By: Estela Martín

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