NZ lost a record 37,500 jobs last month amid the nationwide Covid-19 lockdown

Source: 1News

Job numbers sharply fell by a record 37,500 last month - a reminder of the impact Covid-19 and the lockdown has had on businesses in New Zealand.

"With the country in lockdown throughout most of April 2020, the impact of Covid-19 is now being seen in falling job numbers,” Stats NZ economic statistics manager Sue Chapman said in a statement today.

All non-essential businesses were forced to close for over a month during Alert Level 4 lockdown, however some people were able to work from home.

But according to Stats NZ, in seasonally adjusted terms, total filled jobs, including workers who are being subsidised by the Government's Covid-19 wage subsidy scheme, fell 1.7 per cent in April compared to the previous month when it was flat.

The fall was the largest in percentage terms and by number since the filled jobs series began in 1999.

"While a fall in filled jobs does not necessarily mean employment has ceased in all cases, we saw a rise of over 30,000 people claiming the Government’s Jobseeker Support benefit in April," Ms Chapman said, when looking at tax data.

Some of the hardest hit sectors were in agriculture, forestry and fishing which were down 8488 jobs, while accommodation and food services were down 6251 jobs, and manufacturing down 3797 jobs.

In the primary industries jobs fell by 4.3 per cent, or 4480 jobs, while in the goods-producing industries jobs decreased by one per cent, or 4153 jobs. In the service industries they fell 1.7 per cent, which equates to 29,317 jobs.