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Sweden's National Public Employment Agency (Arbetsformedlingen) reports that 9% of the country's workforce was unemployed or part of a government-sponsored job scheme in December 2009 compared to 5.8% a year earlier.
On the other hand, 30,000 people registered with the agency found jobs in December 2009, which is 10% more than a year earlier.
There were 28,000 job vacancies in Sweden in December 2009, an increase of 1,000 vacancies compared to December 2008. The number of redundancies was down by almost two thirds.
Lena Liljeback the employment agency's Deputy Director said "there are strong reasons to believe that we will soon leave the labour market downturn behind us."