New full-time jobs down 74% over 2015

Work voucher purchases +45.2%

(ANSA) - Rome, April 19 - Pensions and social security agency INPS said Tuesday that 291,387 new permanent open-ended contracts were stipulated in the first two months of 2016 (including temporary contracts turned into steady jobs) while 254,274 were terminated for a net rise of 37,113. This is 74% down on the net rise of 143,164 steady contracts in the first two months of 2015, and can be linked to reduced breaks in social security contributions for newly hired workers. The figure is also down on the net increase of 87,180 in the equivalent period in 2014. Steady job contracts were up by 911,000 in 2015 compared to the end of 2014, with 61% of steady hires benefiting from a break on contributions. As well, INPS said over 19.6 million 10-euro vouchers for occasional work hours were sold in the first two months of 2016, a rise of 45.2% on the 13.5 million sold in the same period in 2015. Trade unions have blasted the vouchers, saying they are being widely abused by unscrupulous employers to mask regular, full-time workers.
    Premier Matteo Renzi has said his Jobs Act labour-market reform has boosted the job market.


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