11. Aug 2020
27,300 employees in July — indicating a V-trend rather than a U-trend

There were just over 27,300 employees in the Faroe Islands in July. The latest figures indicate a ‘V-trend’ with increasing growth after the sudden plunge in April as opposed to a ‘U-trend’ with an extended downturn and slow growth.

Employees and COVID-19 stimulus payments

A person is regarded as an employee if, in any given month, he or she receives a wage payment which is no lower than a day wage for an unskilled worker. This means that persons receiving a combination of wage payments from an employer and COVID-19 stimulus payments are also regarded as employees. Persons who only receive COVID-19 stimulus payments are not regarded as employees in these figures.

The graph below shows a pre-Covid projection of how March, April, May, June and July 2020 would turn out assuming the employee trend remained unaffected by the pandemic. The grey field shows the degree of uncertainty (80% and 95%). The red dots show the projected estimate (the point estimate) for these five months, while the blue dots show the real figures from this period. The difference between the red and blue dots thus gives an indication of how Covid-19 has affected employee numbers.

Løntakaraskarin í juli

The actual number of employees in July was 27,300, which is an increase of 50 on July 2019. The projected estimate for July 2020 was just about 28,100 – a difference of 2.9%.

Private service sector starting to recover

The four graphs below show the employee figures for the past two years in the four main industrial sectors: ‘the public service sector’, ‘the private service sector’, ‘fishing and other natural resources’ and ‘construction and other manufacturing’ over the past two years.

As in the graph above, the blue lines show the general employee numbers, the blue dots show the employee numbers in March to July 2020. The red dots show the projected estimate assuming the employee trend remained unchanged. The grey fields show the degree of uncertainty (80% and 95%).

A comparison between the real and the projected figures for the March-July period shows that the private service sector deviates the most from the projected estimate and has had the biggest drop in employee numbers. However, this sector is now starting to recover from the sudden downturn in April (a description of the four main industrial sectors can be found below this article).

The private service sector had just over 8,600 employees in July. The projected estimate showed about 9,000 – a difference of about 400 employees (4.6%). This difference was 16% in April and 11% in May.

Privatar tænastuvinnur í juli

The other three main industrial sectors have experienced less deviation from the projected trend.

Almenn o.o. tænasta í juli

Byggivinna o.o. tilvirking í juli

Fiskivinna o.o. tilfeingisvinna í juli


About employees

An employee is anyone aged between 16 and 74 who earns a wage that is subject to tax at source (PAYE) and resides in the Faroe Islands at the time of wage payment. A person is regarded as an employee if he or she receives a wage payment which is no lower than a day wage for an unskilled worker, regardless of whether the wage is paid by a Faroese or an overseas company.

About the trend

The trend describes the employee trend by adjusting for seasonal effects and error components in the figures.

About the main industrial sectors

Grouped under the ‘fishery and other natural resources’ sector are the following branches: agriculture, fishing, aquaculture, extraction of raw materials, fish processing and activities not elsewhere indicated.

The ‘construction and other manufacturing’ sector includes: shipyards/machine shops, other manufacturing, construction and energy.

The ‘private services’ sector includes: trade and repair, hotels and restaurants, sea transport, other transport, communications, finance and insurance, business services. household services and organisations, culture, etc.

‘Governmental and other services’ includes: public administration and services (central administration, municipalities, education, health and social work), government institutions and the Ministries of Education and Health.