200,000 fewer unemployed over a quarter: hiring is breaking records

The stars align for the government. The sky for the economy continues to clear, as shown by the latest unemployment data for the third quarter released on Wednesday. The number of unemployed (category A) registered a decline of 5.5% compared to the previous quarter. Concretely, there are 206,000 fewer job seekers in the statistics over the period from July to September. That is to say a downward average of more than 66,000 per month, bringing the total number of registered with Pôle emploi to 3.544 million according to the Ministry of the Ministry of Labor.

“Our mobilization for employment is bearing fruit,” was quick to point out Élisabeth Borne on her Twitter account. And to underline that “the number of job seekers without any activity (listed in category A) is at its lowest for 12 years ”. Food for thought for the executive, especially on the situation of young people: among those under 25, the drop was 8.4% in the third quarter, i.e. more than in other age groups (-5.9 % for 25-49 year olds and -4.1% for 50 year olds and over).

This trend will obviously comfort all those who, within the government, campaign to tighten the commitment income by reserving it for young people furthest from employment. A device that is long overdue and could be unveiled in the coming days by President Macron. Something to worry about several heavyweights in the associative and union world, including Laurent Berger of the CFDT, who also sent, on Monday, an open letter to the President of the Republic to remind him of the objective of one million beneficiaries envisaged . “We have been witnessing for several weeks a series of procrastination, giving rise to fears of renouncements”, they write, urging Emmanuel Macron to “go at the end of (his) engagement ”.

A nuanced improvement

By taking a little field, the improvement is more nuanced. If we count the categories including people who have done odd jobs (categories B and C called reduced activity) the decline is indeed less significant: it is down by 1.9% over the quarter. The addition of these three categories (A, B and C) – which gives a broader picture – shows that the level of unemployment is still higher than the pre-crisis level (+124,100). The total also speaks volumes about the extent of this French disease: nearly 6 million people (5.87 million) do not have a job or live in precariousness today.

In any event, the strength of the economic recovery observed this year is undeniable. Jobs have even broken records. In the third quarter, the number of declarations of hiring for more than a month (excluding temporary work) increased by 11.4%, to stand at just over 2.44 million, according to Urssaf. “Such a level had not been reached for twenty-one years”, welcomed the Minister of Labor, Élisabeth Borne. By adding contracts of less than one minus, 6.6 million hires materialized in three months, returning to the levels recorded in 2019.

It is this aspect of very short contracts that questions today, fixed-term contracts representing nearly two-thirds of recruitments. Heavy trend or passing phenomenon? “We must take into account the summer period,” replied the Ministry of Labor, the months of July, August and September being traditionally conducive to seasonal jobs.

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