Labour-market analysis places much emphasis on the concept of search. But there is insufficient empirical information on (a) the relationship between reported job-search and job-finding and (b) how search behaviour changes over a spell without work. We investigate these issues using
a sample constructed from Hungarian labour-force survey panel data of the flow from jobs to the state of “joblessness”. The results on job exits call into question aspects of the standard international classification of “unemployment” and being “out of the labour
force”. Transitions during joblessness in and out of search and among the various categories of non-search are found to be only modest.