Mass redundancies soared 53% in 2011

The number of Portuguese firms that made their workforces redundant en-mass soared by 53% last year, up to November.

By that month, the number of employees laid off under collective redundancy rose 6% on 2010, to 6,917.

The figures were published in a report from the Directorate-General of Employment and Work Relations (DGERT).

In the first 11 months of last year, 699 companies made their workforce redundant en-masse, corresponding to 53.4% more than for the same period in 2010.

This increase was equally reflected in the number of staff involved. From January to November 2011, 6,916 employees were made redundant – 6.6% up on the same period in 2010.

Even so, those numbers are a far cry from the total number of unemployed registered at social security offices and job centres.

In November alone, a further 68,000 jobless were signed up on job centre books.

But there are increasingly more mass redundancies. In 2003, for example, there were, on average, six workers per 1,000 signed up at job centres. By November 2011, the average value had shot up to 10.8 employees per 1,000 in work.