The unemployment rate will climb in the first quarter of this year to 12.1%, compared to the 11.7% percentage with which 2023 closed, according to the central scenario managed by The Adecco Group Institute, the study center of the Adecco group, for the Active Population Survey (EPA) for the January-March period.

If this forecast is compared with the data for the first quarter of 2023, the unemployment rate for the first three months of this year would be 1.2 points lower.

Last Friday, the National Institute of Statistics (INE) published the EPA data for the last quarter of 2023, which showed a decrease in unemployment of 193,400 people for the year as a whole and an increase of 783,000 jobs, the majority in the service sector.

The year ended with a new historical maximum of employment, of 21,246,900 workers, and a number of unemployed people of 2,830,600 people.

“The central scenario for the first quarter of 2024 is to maintain job creation, although with a downward risk, a consequence of the general slowdown of the economy,” they say from the Adecco study center.

In fact, it predicts that employment will show an interannual growth of 3.2% in the first quarter of this year, lower than the 3.8% of the previous quarter, with 663,500 more workers than a year before. The total number of employed people would be 21.12 million at the end of March, below the 21.24 million of the previous quarter.

Regarding unemployment, the Adecco group’s study center expects that the number of unemployed will continue to decline and show a year-on-year drop of 233,700 people (-7.5%) in the first quarter of the year.