The labour market figures in July are very good thanks to the reopening of services and the return of tourism to Spain. Unemployment fell by 89,849 people, the first drop since February.The number of people still affected by temporary layoffs schemes (ERTEs) is now just over one million and the Social Security affiliation average membership is still rising. However, only 17% of the jobs destroyed have been recovered.
Spain temporary layoffs
The recovery in employment in Spain is proving to be a struggle at best, and a mirage at worst. The data shows that the trend in unemployment growth is slowing: unemployed in June rose by 5,100 people compared to 26,573 the previous month, 282,891 in April and 302,265 people in March. However, this month of June was the worst since 2008. The figure continues to exclude workers who are suspended from work or whose hours have been reduced as a result of a temporary layoff scheme.
The number of unemployed in Spain increased by 26,573 people in May, compared to 282,900 the previous month and -84,075 in May 2019. This is the worst May figure in recent years, but it is a vast improvement on previous months (up 282,000 in April and up 302,265 in March).This may be enough to raise some optimism in the Spanish labour market. The labour market data for May also reflects an increase of 97,462 people registered with Social Security compared to the previous month.
The rapid spread of the coronavirus in Spain is sparking a decline in activity for many companies, beyond just the shops, bars and restaurants which have been forced to close. Some giants such as SEAT, Volkswagen or Burger King have announced that they are going to launch temporary layoffs (so called ERTEs) to deal with the situation. The Spanish government calculates that the extraordinary measures already activated could affect up to one million jobs.