Eurozone: Unemployment rate unchanged in December
January 31, 2018
Conditions in the labor market of the common currency bloc were broadly stable in December, according to data by Eurostat. The number of unemployed fell by 165,000 and the unemployment rate came in at 8.7% in December, unchanged from November’s result. The unemployment rate rests at the lowest result since January 2009.
Looking at the countries in the region with data available, several of the economies saw improvements in their labor markets, including all of the bloc’s major-players. France’s unemployment rate inched down to 9.2%, Germany’s unemployment rate to 3.6%, Italy’s unemployment rate to 10.8% and Spain’s to 16.4%.
Despite gains over the past years, notable divergences continue to 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 (20.7%, data refer to October), followed by Spain. At the other end of the spectrum, Germany and Malta have the lowest unemployment rates (3.6%). In addition, youth unemployment remains particularly pronounced in the periphery and came in at 40.8% in Greece (data refers to October), 36.8% in Spain and 32.2% in Italy.