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Degree-holders and Richer Areas Less Exposed to Unemployment Caused by Covid Crisis

Hungary Today 2020.08.17.

Unemployment caused by the coronavirus pandemic has hit those without higher-education the hardest, as well as those areas with historical unemployment issues. Degree-holders, and residents of Budapest in general, have proven to be the most ‘impact-resistant,’ according to the latest data from the National Employment Office (NFSZ), reported by 24.hu.

According to the NFSZ, from March to April alone, nearly 50,000 people have registered at employment centers, 129,700 have indicated they have lost their job since the beginning of the year.

When it comes to looking at country-wide extremes, a Heves county worker with only a primary school education is 26 times more likely to have been fired since the start of the year than a degree-holder from Budapest.

This means that those in jobs that require no major qualifications have so far been a lot more vulnerable to unemployment caused by the virus. Having a degree meant ‘safeness’, as only one in every 121 degree-holders has lost their job. Those working in the trades are slightly safer than those with a high school diploma, but the most vulnerable by far are those with no qualifications at all: every 10th individual with an education less than a high school diploma remained jobless country-wide (this number is worse, of course, in the poorer counties like Heves, Borsod, Hajdú-Bihar or Nógrád).

Additionally, while there are nearly 2.5 million men employed in the country in total and around 2.1 million women, seven thousand more women have lost their jobs than men. According to 24.hu, this is mostly due to the fact that although proportionately there are more degree-holders among women, they are also over-represented in those jobs requiring minimal or no qualifications.

Historical trends have remained unchanged when it comes to areas most vulnerable to high unemployment, only the percentage has grown due to the pandemic: now Nógrád (16 %), Borsod-Abaúj-Zemplén (15,7%), and Somogy (13,9%) lead in terms of unemployment, followed by the usual eastern counties: Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg and Hajdú-Bihar.

Those in Budapest proved to be the most ‘pandemic-resistant’ when compared with the rest of the country. While in the capital, only every 54th worker lost their job, Hajdú-Bihar, Zala and Heves can be found on the opposite end of this scale (overall, every 35th worker in Hungary lost their job).

Second Quarter GDP Falls 13.6% on Pandemic Impact
Second Quarter GDP Falls 13.6% on Pandemic Impact

Hungary’s GDP fell by an annual 13.6% in the second quarter, impacted by the coronavirus crisis, a first reading of data released by the Central Statistical Office (KSH) on Friday shows. KSH said the crisis impacted services as well as industry. Adjusted for seasonal and workday effects, GDP declined by 13.5%. GDP for the first […]Continue reading

Interestingly, 24.hu compared this fresh data to the period in and after the 2008 financial crisis. While the second quarter of this year’s GDP data shows a harsher recession than in 2009, employment data is still better than in 2008: June saw an 8.1% rate of unemployment while the period after the financial crisis had employment above 10%.

featured image via Tamás Vasvári/MTI