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Europe – Unemployment still high but holding stable

30 August 2013

Unemployment in the Eurozone and the European Union remained relatively stable in July compared with the month before, at 12.1% and 11% respectively. However, both remain above unemployment levels for the same month last year, when Eurozone unemployment was 11.5% and European Union unemployment was 10.5%.

The figures released by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union (EU), estimates that there were 26.7 million unemployed people in the now 28 member states (allowing for the inclusion of Croatia). In the Eurozone countries, the number of unemployed people is estimated at 19.2 million. Compared with July 2012, unemployment rose by 995,000 in the EU and by 1 million in the Eurozone.

Among the member states, the lowest unemployment rates were recorded in Austria (4.8%), Germany (5.3%), and Luxembourg (5.7%). Greece and Spain remain the nations with the highest levels of unemployment, with 27.6% and 23.8% respectively.

Compared with a year ago, the unemployment rate increased in 17 countries and fell in 11. The highest increases were registered in Cyprus, rising from 12.2% to 17.3%, Greece, rising from 23.8% to 207.6%, Slovenia rising from 9.3% to 11.2%, and the Netherlands, rising from 5.3% to 7%.

The largest decreases were observed in Latvia, falling to 11.5% from 15.7%, and in Estonia, falling to 7.9% from 10.1%.  

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