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19th May, 2020

Virus may have killed 120,000 jobs

At least 120,000 people lost their job in Hungary because of the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic, researchers of the Academy of Sciences found in a study published yesterday.

Economists István Kónya and János Köllő based their analysis on Google Trends data, such as searches for unemployment benefits.

They estimate the number of registered unemployed at 400,000 at the end of April, an increase of 120,000 from February, the last month before the outbreak of the epidemic.

In addition, the economists say it is likely that many who have very specific skills that cannot be converted to other professions – such as musicians, actors, athletes and cooks – did not register as unemployed as they had little hope of finding a new job.

In these heavily hit sectors, non-standard employment and grey and black work is high, leaving them ineligible for any unemployment benefit, an additional factor for avoiding registration.

Sources regularly consulted, with abbreviations used in text: Népszabadság (N); Magyar Hírlap (MH); Világgazdaság (VG); Napi Gazdaság (NG); Magyar Nemzet (MN); Népszava (Nsz); Kossuth Rádió news (KR); nightly TV news (TV).

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