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Jobless rate 4.0 percent in September, 3.9 percent in Q3

Hungary's jobless rate was 4 percent in September, unchanged from the previous month, the Central Statistical Office (KSH) said. The rate covers unemployment among people between the ages of 15 and 74.

In absolute terms, there were 195,000 unemployed.

The rolling three-month average jobless rate was 3.9 percent in September, down 0.2 percentage points from the previous period.

ING Bank chief analyst Peter Virovacz said the unemployment rate has “basically stagnated” for five months. He noted that the detailed data show the number of economically active Hungarians grew 9,000 in September and 8,000 found jobs immediately, pointing to strong absorption in the local labour market.

Wage pressure is rising, he said, adding that the fresh data shed light on the expected strengthening of inflationary pressure. He said the jobless rate was likely to fall to 3.8 percent by the end of the year as the growing labour squeeze draws in even a number of long-term unemployed.

Takarekbank senior analyst Andras Horvath said employment has reached a record high. Takarekbank expects full-year unemployment to come in around 4 percent, he added.

He said the pre-crisis labour market, characterised by labour shortages and strong wage competition, may have returned in the second half, fuelling concerns over upside inflation risks.

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