Photo via Quatrotv

391,000 jobs were added in the third quarter of 2017, compared to the same period of the previous year, according to a report released by the government’s statistics agency INDEC yesterday.

The figure represents a 1.9 percent increase to the same period in 2016, and amounts to a total of just over 20.5 million jobs – 15.5 million of which received salary, and almost 5 million who were self-employed. The difference between self-employed people and those who receive a salary, according to INDEC, lies on the fact that the former have their own businesses, but either don’t employ people or do it sporadically.

When dissecting the figures regarding “paid workers,” the agency informed that roughly 10.5 million people were formally employed, while almost 5 million were paid “under the table,” (en negro, if you want to use the Argentine term for it) and didn’t get access to the basic labor rights such as having their employer contributing to their pension or health insurance.

This last category had the largest percentage increase of the two – 2.2 percent regarding the period it was compared to. Formal employment, in contrast, grew by 0.9 percent. This means that even though “paid” employment did grow, it did so mostly as a result of informal work.

Moreover, the figures show that the state – both the federal and provincial administrations – is still one of the largest employers of the country: with 3.46 million employees, it was only surpassed by the retail sector, which had 3.57 million workers in the last quarter of 2017. The manufacturing industry (2.3 million workers) and the teaching and construction sectors (2.1 and 1.7 million, respectively) complete the top 5.

Another piece of data worth mentioning is the fact that domestic workers have the highest informality rate. Of the 1.74 million people whose jobs fall under this category, only 486,000 are on the formal side of the economy.

In regards to self-employed workers, the INDEC reported that it was the category with the largest proportional increase of all, with 4.1 percent compared to the third quarter of 2016. What do you know, maybe millennials and their freelancing ideas have it right.