Country Listing

Nicaragua Table of Contents


Unemployment and Underemployment

Reliable labor statistics are difficult to obtain, but nearly half of Nicaragua's work force was estimated to be unemployed or underemployed in 1990. Many Nicaraguan workers eke out speculative incomes in the burgeoning informal sector, which encompasses about 55 percent of the economically active population. After several years of hyperinflation in the late 1980s had eroded conventional salaries, thousands of Nicaraguans chose to cast their lot as black marketeers, street vendors, taxicab drivers, and other persons earning their livings on the streets. Almost everyone sought some means to augment or replace inflation-ruined salaries.

Data as of December 1993