In the first three months of the year, the unemployment rate increased by 0.1 percentage points (pp) in nominal terms, standing at 6.8%. The data were presented this Wednesday by the National Statistics Institute (INE), which also reports that this figure is 1.1 pp lower than the first quarter of 2018.
In relation to the unemployed population, estimated at 353.6 thousand people, the INE suggests that it increased by 1.3% (4.5 thousand) in comparison with the previous quarter and decreased by 13.8% (56.5 thousand) in relation to the first three months of last year.
For the Portuguese employed, about 4,880.2 thousand people, a quarterly decrease of 0.1% (2.8 thousand) and a year-on-year increase of 1.5% (73.5 thousand) were observed. However, the positive signs continue. According to INE, "the youth unemployment rate (15 to 24 years old) stood at 17.6%, the lowest figure in the series started in 2011."
In terms of gender, men continue to represent the largest percentage of the employed population, about 2,496,000 Portuguese in employment. While women make up about 2,384.2 thousand.
The data released this morning by INE do not differ much from the statistics put forward by the Government and Brussels.
In spring economic forecasts released on Tuesday, the European Commission estimated that Portugal's unemployment rate will continue to decline in 2019, anticipating a decline to 6.2% this year and to 5.7% by 2020 .
In the 2019-2023 Stability Program, the Government has anticipated that the unemployment rate will fall from 7% in 2018 to 6.6% this year. By 2020, the executive forecast an unemployment rate of 6.3%, foreseeing to decline to 5.9% in 2021, 5.6% in 2022 and 5.4% in 2023.