Euro Area: Unemployment rate drops to record low in February
Labor market conditions in the common currency block improved in February. The number of unemployed people decreased by 181,000 month-on-month, with the unemployment rate falling to a record low of 6.8% in February from 6.9% in January.
Looking at countries, 12 economies saw their unemployment rates decrease in February, including France, Italy, the Netherlands and Spain. On the other hand, Estonia saw its unemployment rate increase while five economies saw their unemployment rates stable, including Germany.
Disparities in the labor market among core and periphery countries persist. Spain (12.6%) and Greece (11.9%) are the economies with the highest unemployment rates. At the other end of the spectrum, Germany (3.1%) and Malta (3.1%) have the lowest unemployment rates.
Commenting on the release, Bert Colijn, senior economist at ING, stated:
“The rapid recovery of the job market is set to slow from here on. The war adds uncertainty to the employment outlook and could result in delayed new hiring. This is especially the case in manufacturing, as the industrial sentiment survey already revealed declining hiring expectations in March. Still, the labour market remains very robust at current levels of unemployment.”