The number of unemployed persons went down by 330 thousand to 5.88 million from 6.21 million in the third quarter. Employment fell by 21 thousand to 16.17 million from 16.19 million in the previous period. Job losses occurred in the formal sector (-135 thousand) and in private households (-43 thousand), while gains ocurred in the informal sector (119 thousand) and in agriculture (39 thousand).
The labour force declined by 351 thousand to 22.05 million from 22.40 million in Q3 and those detached from it advanced by 503 thousand to 15.47 million from 14.97 million.
The expanded definition of unemployment, including people who have stopped looking for work, decreased to 36.3 percent in the fourth quarter from 36.8 percent in the previous quarter.
A year earlier, the jobless rate was lower at 26.5 percent.