Mexico’s Unemployment Rate Falls to 4 Percent: INEGIBy Rodrigo Brugada | Fri, 06/25/2021 - 19:46
The National Institute of Geography and Statistics (INEGI) reported this week the results of the National Occupation and Employment Survey (ENOE). The report indicates that Mexico's unemployment rate reached 4 percent in May, which means that a total of 2.3 million are out of work.
The report details that the economically active population, all people over 15 years old who work or are looking for work, amounted to 57.2 million people in May 2021. This implies a rate of 58.7 percent and represents an increase of 12 million compared to May 2020, when the health emergency confined a significant portion of the population.
The country’s total occupation was 54.9 million people that same month, of those 33.07 million were men, 7 million more than 12 months ago. On the other hand, 21.8 million were women, representing an increase of 4.5 million since last year. The enormous gender gap continues to be observed in this category, with almost 12 million more men employed than women.
When broken down by economic sector, 62.4 percent of the population works in the commerce and services sector, 25.1 percent in the industrial sector, 12 percent in primary activities and 0.6 percent did not specify. The industrial sector saw a growth of 1.6 percent since last year, while the others saw a slight decrease. Of the total number of people employed, 68.2 percent are subordinate and paid workers, 22.7 percent are self-employed without hired employees, and 5 percent are employers.
The number of people working in the informal sector represents 55 percent of the economically active population, amounting to 30.5 million people. In the urban environment, the informal employment rate was 27.6 percent.
The survey also found that 7.1 million people are underemployed, meaning they work but have the need and availability to work more hours. This represents a change of 5.9 million fewer people compared to May 2020. The self-employed accounted for a significant percentage of the underemployed, up 7.9 percent from a year ago.
The unoccupied population, which represents the population without a job but looking for one, accounted was 4 percent. This represents a 0.2 percent decrease. However, 400,000 more people were out of work in concrete numbers. This apparent contradiction can be explained by considering that the rate is calculated with the total economically active population as the denominator, and it grew. In the urban environment, the unemployment rate was 5.3 percent. The age group with the highest unemployment was the 25-44 age group, and there was a 45.9 percent increase in this indicator compared to last year.
Meanwhile, the economically inactive population, which is neither working nor seeking to do so, stood at 40.2 million people. This represents 41.3 percent of the population aged 15 and over, 9.9 million less than in May 2020. Of this category, 7.8 million declared themselves available for work but did not take any action in this regard, making them a sector that can eventually contribute to the labor market.