New unemployment numbers have slowed down since May

Unemployment Insurance Office (Töötukassa) branch in Pärnu.
Unemployment Insurance Office (Töötukassa) branch in Pärnu. Source: ERR

The Unemployment Insurance Fund (Töötukassa) has registered more than 50,900 unemployed, but compared to the start of the pandemic, new unemployment has slowed down.

"As of right now, there are 50,918 unemployed. Normally unemployment rises at the start of the month and we can see that trend continue with data from June," said Margit Paulus, head of analytics at Unemployment Insurance Fund.

The first week of June has brought more than 2,000 new unemployed. For comparison, the last week of May saw 1,400 unemployed, Paulus added. She noted that there can be additional changes in data because sometimes entries are done with a delay.

When looking at trends from the last few months, Paulus predicts that June will look similar to May in regard to unemployment. In contrast, the first week of April saw 4,000 people registered as unemployed. Comparing the current situation with the start of the emergency situation, registration activity has dropped greatly.

Remuneration measures will end in July and companies might have to make layoffs then. "Normally in autumn, we have seen that when seasonal vocations are out, then unemployment will also increase, but those are seasonal changes," Paulus added.

At the start of June, the Unemployment Insurance Fund has started reimbursing wages from May. "The starts of months, when applications are made available, are the most active times in terms of reimbursements. This week there have been reimbursement applications presented by over 6,000 companies for over 68,000 employees. We are reviewing these applications, but by today there have been €148 million euros paid over the entire period," she added.

Since the emergency situation, a total of €200 million in reimbursements have been made to 132,000 people and close to 17,000 employers.

Collective layoffs have been announced by seven companies this week, affecting 422 people. Paulus said that most of that is from Tallink, but layoffs of around 20-40 people have been made in manufacturing and construction as well.


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Editor: Kristjan Kallaste

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