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World

Eurozone unemployment dips in May

  • The unemployment rate for the EU as a whole followed a similar trend, declining by 0.1 percentage points over a month to 7.3 percent.
Published July 1, 2021

BRUSSELS: The level of unemployment in the eurozone dipped lower in May, official data showed on Thursday, with the European job market spared the worst effects on the pandemic.

Eurostat, the EU's statistics agency, said unemployment fell to 7.9 percent in the 19 countries that use the euro single currency, 0.1 percentage points lower than April.

The unemployment rate for the EU as a whole followed a similar trend, declining by 0.1 percentage points over a month to 7.3 percent.

Youth unemployment in the eurozone, which has risen more sharply during the Covid crisis, was at 17.5 percent, Eurostat said.

The data still remained higher than a year before, just before a second wave of lockdowns crushed the economy, when unemployment in the eurozone had stood at 7.5 percent, with youth unemployment at 15.4 percent.

Joblessness in Europe exploded in the spring of 2020, the result of a landmark recession as restrictions on movement kept people at home in many countries across the globe.

However, many national governments implemented EU-backed job guarantee schemes and other programmes that have so far averted a long-term shock on employment that many had feared.

The Netherlands and the Czech Republic had the lowest unemployment rates in the bloc, at 3.3 percent.

Germany, the EU's biggest economy and an industrial powerhouse, had an unemployment rate of 3.7 percent.

The highest rates were recorded in economies highly dependent on tourism such as Spain, at 15.3 percent, and Greece, at 15.4 percent, though both were on a downward trend.

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