Eurozone Unemployment January 2017


Eurozone: Unemployment rate stable in January

March 2, 2017

Conditions in the labor market of the common currency bloc remained broadly unchanged in January, according to data by Eurostat. The number of unemployed persons fell by 56,000, which was a significantly smaller decrease than December’s fall of 126,000. The unemployment rate was steady at December’s 9.6%, the lowest rate since May 2009.

Looking at the countries in the region, seven economies saw lower unemployment rates in January, including Germany and Spain. In contrast, unemployment rose in two economies and was unchanged in the remaining countries. Notable divergences persist in the labor market among core Eurozone countries and those on the periphery. Greece is the economy in the Eurozone with by far the highest unemployment rate (23.0%, data refer to November), followed by Spain (18.2%) and Cyprus (14.1%).

At the other end of the spectrum, Germany (3.8%), Malta (4.4%) and the Netherlands (5.3%) registered the lowest unemployment rates in the Eurozone in January. Among the remaining major economies, Italy had the highest unemployment rate with 11.9%, followed by France with 10.0%.

In 2016 as a whole, unemployment in the Eurozone averaged 10.0%, which was the lowest average rate since 2009. FocusEconomics Consensus Forecast panelists expect the unemployment rate to average 9.7% in 2017, which is unchanged from last month’s forecast. For 2018, the panel expects the unemployment rate to average 9.3%.

Author: Angela Bouzanis, Lead Economist

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Eurozone Unemployment Chart

Euro Unemployment January 2017

Note: Unemployment, % of active population. Data for Estonia refer to December and data for Greece refer to November.
Source: Eurostat.

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