Unemployment in Brazil
The rate of unemployment in Brazil is determined by the Monthly Employment Survey, coordinated by the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics (IBGE). This research examines the economically active population (PEA) of the six largest metropolitan areas (São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Belo Horizonte, Porto Alegre, Salvador and Recife).
Definition of unemployment
The IBGE classifies as unemployed those who were not working, were available for work and had taken action to get work in the thirty days preceding the survey.
For research conducted between 1983 and 2002, the IBGE considered working age population (PIA), to be those over the age of fifteen. Under the new methodology the age limit was raised to eighteen. To be considered employed, the institute once set the threshold at 15 hours per week. The new study lowers that to one hour per week.
The highest unemployment rate registered since January 2002 was April 2004 (13.1%) and the lowest was December 2011 (4.7%). Only twice, in 2006 and 2009, did the rate rise in the previous year. In the end of 2013, the unemployment rate fell to a record low 4.3% in December from an already low 4.6% in November. This marks the lowest since the current version of the Brazilian unemployment rate was first reported in 2002. A comparison with the pre-2002 unemployment rate index suggested that was the tightest labor market since at least 1980.
Unemployment rate (%)