– Unemployment is falling faster than initially estimated, but weak retail sales may herald a slowdown in the labour market – Łukasz Kozłowski, an expert of the Employers of Poland comments on the latest CSO data.
In June the registered unemployment rate fell to 12 percent - according to the latest CSO data. It is a better result than indicated by preliminary estimates of the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy two weeks ago. Positive trend in the Polish labour market is thus continued, although we need to remember that seasonal work had a significant influence on the increase in the number of employed people during the previous month. In July we cannot count on the positive impact of this factor to such a great extent. However, during the holiday season – according to our earlier forecasts - the unemployment rate will probably fall slightly below the 12 percent level.
However, are data on retail sales last month is not so good. Its value increased by only 1.2 percent compared to the same period last year, while on a monthly basis there was a decline of 1.1 percent. This result is worse than the median of analysts' forecasts that stood at 4.1 percent year to year. A negative aspect of these data is weakened by the fact that the annual growth rate of retail sales value in constant prices stood at a slightly higher level i.e. 1.8 percent. In addition, the final outcome was to some extent influenced by rapidly decreasing volume of car sales (year on year).
The data, however, gives a negative picture of the current economic situation of the Polish economy. From the first months of this year, we see a slowdown in the industry, which slowly began to influence other sectors and spheres of economic activity. This may adversely affect the situation on the labour market in the second half of the year, as the current business climate will probably not prompt entrepreneurs to increase the level of employment at the rate we have observed recently. However, the current difficulties are likely to be temporary and after a few months we should experience another economic upturn.
Łukasz Kozłowski, expert of Employers of Poland