Mexico adds 608,000 jobs in August, unemployment 5.2%

FILE PHOTO: A job seeker checks a job application form for an assembly factory as the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) outbreak continues in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico June 17, 2020. REUTERS/Jose Luis Gonzalez/File Photo

MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexico’s unemployment rate was 5.2% in August, official data showed on Monday, the first time the figure has been published in five months after the statistics agency suspended the survey during the coronavirus outbreak.

In July, the unemployment rate was 5.4%, the statistics agency said. In March, the last period for which the survey was published, the rate was 2.9%.

Mexico’s economy was gradually reactivating in August following a relaxation of measures to contain the coronavirus, resulting in 608,000 people joining the workforce, the statistics agency INEGI said.

Of 12 million people who lost work in April, 7.8 million were back at work by August, the agency said.

INEGI cautioned that some elements of the survey could be less precise than previous editions because of lower participation by interviewees.

Reporting by Frank Jack Daniel; Editing by Toby Chopra and Jonathan Oatis