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Saturday, July 28, 2007

Hungary April-June Employment

Well the Statistical Office have the latest employment numbers (April-June 2007) out. Really, on the surface, there would appear to be no change:

Hungary's rate of unemployment dropped further to 7.0% year on year in the April-June period, from 7.3% in the previous three-month period and 7.5% in Feb-April 2007.

This level is the lowest in 2.5 years. Also:

"the number of unemployed was 296,900 and the number of employed totalled 3.943 million in April-June. The latter figure compares with 3.92 m in Mar-May. The number of unemployed dropped by 10,800 from the previous 3-m period and by 8,800 from the April-June period in 2006."

As can also be read off from the chart below, the most striking thing here is that the number of employed people is more or less stationary. In principle, given the weakening taking place in the economy this is good news, but it is also the measure of a historic lost opportunity, as global conditions being expressed across the rest of the EU8 are leading to rapid employment growth (and of course overheating). One thing the Hungarian economy isn't going to do in the coming months is "overheat" (despite the temperatures Daniel has been noting), au contraire, under-heating and the rapid arrival of an early winter are more the problem to hand.

Looking at the next chart (all courtesy of the KSH), the general recent evolution in economic activity is clear enough to see, and the evolution is not an especially good one.


Antal Dániel said...

Unfortunately KSH has no data on the people leaving the country (it would be quite hard to measure). However, it has a table on inbound migration, and the number of foreign citizens living in the country is on an all-time peak (including the end of the Yugoslavian wars when many ethnic Hungarians moved to Hungary from Serbia and they received citizenship with at least a year's delay). Compared to some EU members it is not a big deal but the number of foreign citizens now exceed 1,5% of the total population. In general you may expect that outbound migration may grow, as the very low level of domestic migration level is steadily growing. The government estimates that about 50-60 thousand citizens work abroad which is barely a third of the foreign citizens living in Hungary, so were are still an immigration destination.

Antal Dániel said...

It was just annonced by Mr Veres yesterday that the surplus revenues of tax authority will be partly used to decrease social security contributions in the legal economy.