February 28, 2020 / 1:28 PM / a month ago

UPDATE 1-Chile November-January jobless rate rose to 7.4%

 (Adds details from INE press conference to explain methodology
    SANTIAGO, Feb 27 (Reuters) - Chile's official unemployment
rate rose to 7.4% during the November to January
period, the government said on Friday.
    The National Institute of Statistics (INE) said the figure
was 0.3 percentage point higher than the one recorded in the
three months to December because of a change to its calculation
    INE director Sandra Quijada said the changes seek to
incorporate the impact of the migrant population on the Chilean
labor market.     
    Immigration into Chile has increased sixfold in less than 30
years, from 114,500 in the 1992 census, to 746,465 in 2017, amid
a wave of mass migration from destitute nations in the region
such as Haiti and Venezuela.
    "The foreign population has strongly influenced the dynamics
of the labor market," Quijada told a press conference in
Santiago on Friday. 
    Chile's former labor minister Nicolas Monckeberg said last
July that more than 1 million migrant workers were living in
Chile, 50% of whom had arrived in the last year. 
    He said the sudden increase presented a "challenge" for the
government since it affected employment figures and would force
it to create more jobs than it otherwise would have had to.     
    The unemployment rate of the migrant population is 6.7% and
for nationals 7.1%, INE said on Friday.
    The rise in unemployment also comes after successive months
of anti-government protests that caused millions of dollars'
worth of damage to business, saw the peso fall to historically
low levels and damaged investor confidence in the
commodities-rich nation. 
             November-J  October     November
             anuary      -December   2018
             2020        2019        -January
 Rate (pct)  7.4         7.0         6.8
 (Reporting by Aislinn Laing; Editing by Alex Richardson and
Steve Orlofsky)
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