Eurozone: Unemployment rate inches down in November
January 9, 2019
According to data released by Eurostat, labor market conditions in the common currency bloc improved in November. The number of unemployed people increased 90,000, and the unemployment rate fell from 8.0% to 7.9%. November’s result marks the lowest unemployment rate since October 2008.
Looking at the countries with data available, nine economies saw their unemployment rate drop, including Italy and Spain. In contrast, Belgium, Cyprus, Latvia and Malta saw their unemployment rates edge up.
Despite a large overall improvement in the Eurozone over recent years, disparities in the labor market among core and periphery countries persist. Greece is the economy in the Eurozone with by far the highest unemployment rate (18.6%, data refers to September), followed by Spain (14.7%) and Italy (10.5%). At the other end of the spectrum, Germany (3.3%), Malta (3.7%) and the Netherlands (3.5%) have the lowest unemployment rates.
Eurozone Unemployment Forecast
FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect the unemployment rate to average 7.8% in 2019, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. For 2020, the panel expects the unemployment rate to average 7.6%.