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The mystery of the falling unemployment rate in the midst of a pandemic

What exactly is the point of counting a person as employed if he has worked for just an hour in the preceding week?

August 03, 2021 / 10:39 AM IST
The mystery of the falling unemployment rate in the midst of a pandemic

A person working under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act or MNREGA scheme (Image by PradeepGaurs/Shutterstock)

We’ve all heard of jobless growth. It now turns out that, in the period July 2019 to June 2020, a period which contained two quarters which were affected by the lockdown, a period which saw year-on-year GDP growth fall in every succeeding quarter, culminating in GDP shrinking by 24.4 per cent in the April-June 2020 quarter, the nation’s unemployment rate actually fell. In other words, instead of the usual economic growth without jobs, we have had jobs without economic...

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