Seasonal unemployment

Seasonal unemployment happens when workers are unemployed at certain times of the year when demand for labour is lower than usual because they work in industries where they are not needed all year round.

Examples of industries where demand, production labor, and employment are seasonal include tourism and leisure, farming, construction and retailing.

Farmer workers Seasonal unemployment
Many Farmer workers can only be employed seasonally

The seasonal unemployment implies not only the under-utilization of the workforce but also the resources used in the production.

For instances, the demand for woollen clothes will be more in winters as compare summer. So, the need for the capital resources and the workforce in the textile industry will be more during this period.

The seasonal unemployment is predictable as most of the times it is well known with certainty the period during which the demand for the goods changes.

Seasonal unemployment is a form of structural unemployment wherein the economic structure changes following the change in the season, and hence the demand for the workers varies accordingly.

Why do workers remain in such industries?

Workers who work in the construction business are usually interested in higher wages. However, agricultural workers do not receive a high salary for their work.

Migrant workers are individuals or groups who move from one region to another seeking work.

For instance, a worker from Mexico may move to America for harvesting season and after work is over return home with their wages when the season ends.

Seasonal unemployment does not always influence the whole country as it varies from region to region.

Some other industries are affected by seasonality as well.

Take accounting for example. During the ‘busy season’ or end of financial year accounting firms need their staff to put in more hours.

Accountants are part of seasonal unemployment

They might even hire some new team. However, when the season is over, those workers will be laid off

Seasonal employment is natural and much of the time is the result of the changing seasons here on earth.