OUCH: Euro Area Unemployment Hits A Record High

European Union EU

Photo: AP

The euro area unemployment rate climbed to 11.6 per cent in September, an record high.This was higher than the 11.5 per cent expected by economists.

From the announcement:

The euro area1 (EA17) seasonally-adjusted2 unemployment rate3 was 11.6% in September 2012, up from 11.5% in August4. The EU271 unemployment rate was 10.6% in September 2012, stableĀ  compared with August4. In both zones, rates have risen significantly compared with September 2011, when they were 10.3% and 9.8% respectively. These figures are published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union.

Eurostat estimates that 25.751 million men and women in the EU27, of whom 18.490 million were in the euro area, were unemployed in September 2012. Compared with August 2012, the number of persons unemployed increased by 169 000 in the EU27 and by 146 000 in the euro area. Compared with September 2011, unemployment rose by 2.145 million in the EU27 and by 2.174 million in the euro area.

Among the Member States, the lowest unemployment rates were recorded in Austria (4.4%), Luxembourg (5.2%), Germany and the Netherlands (both 5.4%), and the highest in Spain (25.8%) and Greece (25.1% in July 2012).

Compared with a year ago, the unemployment rate increased in 20 Member States and fell in seven. The largest decreases were observed in Lithuania (14.7% to 12.9%), Estonia (11.4% to 10.0% between August 2011 and August 2012), and Latvia (17.0% to 15.9% between the second quarters of 2011 and 2012). The highest increases were registered in Greece (17.8% to 25.1% between July 2011 and July 2012), Cyprus (8.5% to 12.2%), Spain (22.4% to 25.8%) and Portugal (13.1% to 15.7%). Between September 2011 and September 2012, the unemployment rate for males increased from 10.1% to 11.5% in the euro area and from 9.7% to 10.6% in the EU27. The female unemployment rate rose from 10.6% to 11.8% in the euro area and from 9.9% to 10.7% in the EU27.

In September 2012, 5.520 million young persons (under 25) were unemployed in the EU27, of whom 3.493 million were in the euro area. Compared with September 2011, youth unemployment rose by 164 000 in the EU27 and by 275 000 in the euro area. In September 2012, the youth unemployment rate was 22.8% in the EU27 and 23.3% in the euro area, compared with 21.7% and 21.0% respectively in September 2011. In September 2012 the lowest rates were observed in Germany (8.0%), the Netherlands (9.7%) and Austria (9.9%), and the highest in Greece (55.6% in July 2012) and Spain (54.2%).

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