Eurozone: Unemployment hits new record high in January
March 1, 2013
According to data released by Eurostat on 1 March, the number of unemployed increased by 19,000 persons in January. The figure was virtually unchanged from the 18,800 new job seekers recorded in December (previously reported: +16,000) and marked the 21th consecutive increase in the number of unemployed. As a result of the monthly rise, the unemployment rate rose to 11.9%, which was up from both the revised 11.8% observed in December (previously reported: 11.7%) and market expectations of 11.8%. The figure marks yet another record high for the common currency area.
At a country level, Greece (27.0%, data from November) and Spain (26.2%) were the Euro area members with the highest unemployment rates in January. At the other end of the spectrum, Austria (4.9%), Luxembourg and Germany (both at 5.3%) recorded the lowest unemployment rates. Among the remaining major economies, Italy had the highest jobless rate (11.7%), followed by France (10.6%).
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panellists expect the unemployment rate to average 12.0% in 2013, which is unchanged from last month's forecast. For 2014, the panel expects the unemployment rate to average 11.8%.
Author: Armando Ciccarelli, Head of Data Solutions