Eu­ro­zone job­less rate re­mains at 12.1 per­cent

Kathimerini English - - Front Page -

Euro-area un­em­ploy­ment held at a record in Novem­ber as pol­i­cy­mak­ers strug­gled to bol­ster the re­cov­ery from the cur­rency bloc’s long­est re­ces­sion. The job­less rate re­mained at 12.1 per­cent, the Euro­pean Union’s sta­tis­tics of­fice in Lux­em­bourg said yes­ter­day. That’s in line with the me­dian es­ti­mate in a Bloomberg News sur­vey of 26 econ­o­mists. Af­ter sev­eral re­vi­sions of pre­vi­ous months’ data, un­em­ploy­ment has been sta­ble at that level since April, Euro­stat said. While un­em­ploy­ment re­mains re­sis­tant to pol­i­cy­mak­ers’ at­tempts to boost the econ­omy, pos­i­tive signs are grad­u­ally ac­cu­mu­lat­ing. Novem­ber re­tail sales in­creased 1.4 per­cent from the pre­vi­ous month, beat­ing an­a­lysts’ es­ti­mates, and 1.6 per­cent year-on-year, Euro­stat said yes­ter­day in a sep­a­rate re­port. Europe’s frag­ile la­bor mar­ket re­mains a ma­jor con­cern for EU lead­ers as they try to fos­ter the re­cov­ery. Last month, they ac­knowl­edged that the job­less rate re­mains “un­ac­cept­ably high,” es­pe­cially among young peo­ple, 18 months af­ter they un­veiled a 120-bil­lion-euro pack­age to jump-start the econ­omy and cre­ate jobs.Un­em­ploy­ment varied widely across the euro area in Novem­ber, from a low of 4.8 per­cent in Aus­tria to a high of 26.7 per­cent in Spain. Greece, which last re­ported in Septem­ber, had a job­less rate of 27.4 per­cent.

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