November 17, 2021

Is Israel’s employment recovery tapering off?

The labor market was expected to get much better after government benefits for unpaid leave (Halat) tapered off at the end of June. But things haven’t exactly worked out that way.

Earlier this week, the Central Bureau of Statistics said that the broad unemployment figure for the first half of July rose slightly to 9 percent, compared to 8.8% during the second half of June. Some 383,700 people did not participate in the workforce during the first two weeks of July, as compared to 376,600 in the last two weeks of June. For comparison, that’s about 184,000 more people unemployed than were on the eve of the pandemic in January 2020, when unemployment was at a record low, according to the Finance Ministry. This is despite there being an estimated 130,000 unfilled positions available in companies around Israel.

That sputter is a blow to Israel’s economic recovery. In April and…

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