Coronavirus Epidemic Reduces Employment, Reverses Seasonal Trends

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, April 7, 2020 – The number of policyholders with the Croatian Pension Insurance Fund (HZMO) fell in March from the previous month, indicating that the crisis caused by the coronavirus epidemic has resulted in lay-offs and that employers did not hire seasonal workers as in the previous years.

The number of policyholders decreased by 12,423, or 0.8%, to 1,529,905. The largest monthly decrease, of 6.4%, was recorded in the tourism and hospitality industry.

The number of insured persons also fell in other important categories, including the manufacturing industry (-0.3%) and trade (-0.9%).

“Despite the pre-crisis expectations that the start of the spring months and the Easter holidays, influenced by seasonal factors, will formally mark the start of the tourist (pre)season and the simultaneous rise in the number of policyholders, the monthly fall in the total number of policy holders reflects the first obstacles and difficulties that the coronavirus pandemic has brought to the Croatian labour market,” Raiffeisen Bank (RBA) said in an analysis of the HZMO data.

RBA analysts expect that the usual seasonal trends relating to the tourist season will be weaker than in the previous years.

Compared with March 2019, the number of policyholders increased by 8,646 or 0.6%. The increase was mainly driven by increases in the number of policyholders from the information and communications industry (+7.4%), construction (+5.8%), and professional, scientific and technical activities (+3.9%).

On the other hand, decreases were recorded in the manufacturing industry (-1.3%) and tourism and hospitality (-8.4%).

More coronavirus news can be found in the Lifestyle section.


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